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  REVIEW of "NEW ROAD," Alan's debut album.
Review by Mike O’Cull, independent music journalist.
  One thing you realize when you've been around musicians for a while is that creativity happens on its own time table. Some songwriters find their spark and their voice early on in their efforts and do amazing work in their youth.
Other songwriters, however, find those things later in life and fly in the face of the ultra young musician stereotype as being the only way to garner attention and success.

Alan Babbitt is a prime example of that other kind of musician. He finally felt the call to get serious about music at age 65 after back-burnering it for many years.

The result of that call is Alan’s debut album, New Road, released at almost 70 years of age.

new Road cover artThe sound here is a unique mix of jazz, folk, and singer/songwriter guitar pop. Babbitt has developed a very personal sound and New Road is anything but another cookie cutter effort by a another struggling writer.

Instead, the record displays a songwriter who clearly knows who he is and owns the courage and confidence to mix styles and approaches in new ways, use an almost conversational lyrical style in place of the usual half-baked poetics, and generally puts his own stamp on all that he touches. Most debut albums don't have the artistic grit to attempt this, but Babbitt is clearly not most recording artists.

A sense of playfulness is one of Babbitt’s most endearing qualities and is a welcome change from the serious tone of many singer/songwriter records. He's not writing novelty songs, but creating songs with other emotions than depression and angst, although he does have a more serious side.

songwriter art
“The Songwriter,” for example, is a fun, jazzy, and light-hearted look at how notes become new songs that is topped off with smoothly layered vocal harmonies. There's no way to stay mad while listening to this song. Lol It's a real mood lightener.
Back to Baseball art
“Back To Baseball” is a gentle reminescence of a boy growing up in Brooklyn in the 1950s learning the pain of losing his favorite team. It's the kind of song that fuels sepia-toned memories of different times.
To Hell with Spammers art
“To Hell With Spammers” has got to be Babbitt’s most popular song, as it takes on those constant life interrupters we all now deal with in the modern age and wins. His lyrical tone and groove both recall Warren Zevon a bit in a very good way.
  The lone cover song on the album is Babbitt’s take on “Our House,” and is a good retelling of one of Graham Nash’s best songs.

New Road is a noteworthy debut from a promising artist. Fans of folk/rock, jazz chords, and artists with a unique perspective on things will have a good time with the songs and vibes it contains. Hopefully, Alan Babbitt will speed up his timetable for his second record, as sixty odd years is just too long to wait.
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