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Music Review - `Summer in America` by Dana Cooper (lz)

Dana Cooper --Summer in America   (click on image to watch video)

 21 July 2020

 

Black

Granted, summer looks a lot different this year. Where it was once for a time to venture out on vacation, enjoy time off from school, gather with friends and relatives, and opt to unwind, in 2020 it’s about avoiding the plague caused by a pandemic, the ongoing unrest and a brewing political maelstrom that shows no sign of subsiding any time soon. That sad, credit Dana Cooper with summarizing that shared sense of uncertainty with “Summer in America,” a timely testament to this perilous period of our history. “There’s a madness in our midst,” he sings over a quietly assuring melody that belies the trouble and turmoil to which he’s alluding. In a sense, it’s a call to arms, one that expresses a determination to march together, locked arm in arm, to oppose the forces of racial injustice and those that would deny the right to peacefully protest and thereby give voice to those swept aside by indifference and oppression. However it also shares a keen sense of optimism that suggests those that take to the streets will ultimately triumph and America will reclaim the ideals on which this precious nation was founded.


To his credit, Cooper’s well equipped to express these sentiments. A nominee for the Kerryville Folk Festival Hall of Fame, a recipient of the 2014 Heritage Musician Award from Pilgrim Center for the Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, and winner of the 2015 Spirit of Folk Award by Folk Alliance International, his songs have been widely recorded by any number of exceptional artists, making him a regular presence at songwriting workshops both here and abroad. His own albums have achieved widespread recognition as well, and with a new effort due soon, “Summer in America” provides the promise of scaling new plateaus on his way to wider recognition.

“Summer in America is indeed one terrific tune, and more importantly, a song for all seasons that aptly sums up the modern American malaise.

 

 Lee Zimmerman

 

Lee Zimmerman

To Read All of Lee's Reviews, Click Here

 

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