2003 finally brings forth a real treat with the release of “Second Wind”, my long awaited solo album. The album is in fact my fourth album (the previous two being collaborative offerings) but is actually only the second solo album and after four years it certainly has taken some time, but I believe it is definitely worth the wait. To say this album is a ‘career’ album as some in the industry are already saying, is a fact even more remarkable given that it comes so closely on the heels of our critically acclaimed bluegrass album “Blue Mountain Rain”, a highly successful foray into bluegrass music (with Martin Louis & Sydney bluegrass band Acoustic Shock) which achieved 3 chart hits, 9 Award nominations and an award win for “Best Independent Release” in the National Section of 2003 Victorian Country Music Awards. Second Wind, however, is a return to a Country music format and most surprisingly it even edges into some mainstream country with tracks such as Rodney Crowells This Man I Love and the Kim Richey/Al Anderson penned Heart Of A Heartache but there is still plenty of traditional country there also to keep my long time supporters happy.
There are 14 tracks encompassing a variety of styles and a good balance of tempos from the very traditional, almost bush ballad sound of The Outbacks Been Getting the Rain (penned by Pat Drummond) to the strong contemporary feel of This Man I Love; from the gentle acoustic, almost blue-grassy feel of the title track Second Wind to the almost retro country swing of Ill Just Pretend, a song that youd swear came from the long lost era of Patsy Cline and such singers with that famous country cry in their voices.
Once again the album contains a healthy share of Australian penned songs including a choice few from my own hand – co-writes with previous collaborator Heather Field and also with Mark Selby, Ashley Gorley and Keith Anderson. Produced by Herm Kovac, the album has a beautifully warm and polished sound which compliments but does not overpower the gentle vulnerability of the vocals and an extra richness of flavour has been given by adding vocal collaborations with well known Australian male vocalists, Bill Chambers and Grant Richardson, with an equally pleasing result. Kovacs arrangements along with Australias top musicians and a very individual approach to even those tracks we may have heard from other artists, make this album an absolute treat.
It has been five years since the release of Karen’s debut album Labour Of Love which contained three chart hits and which landed the first of many Australian Country Music & other Award nominations. Say Karen, “Since then it’s been a long (and at times very bumpy!) road,… but over this time I’ve gained tremendous support from broadcasters and fans alike”
This album is special and shows yet another side of me, please take a minute to listen to some of the song samples,… you won’t be disappointed!,…. and of course don’t forget to email me and tell me what you think!. Mixed, Produced and Engineered by Herm Kovac. All tracks except “Angel” & “The Outback’s Been Getting the Rain” Recorded at Ramrod Studio, Sydney. These two tracks were recorded at Rancom Street Studio.
Mastered by Barry Henninger at Soundview Studios, Clarence. Musicians: Stuart French, Mark Punch, Tom Graso, Ian Lees, Clare O’Meara, Kere Buchanan, Naomi Coggan, Michel Rose, Rod McCormack, Glenn Wilson, Owen Reynolds, Martin Louis, Pat Drummond, Mick Albeck, Steph Miller and Bill Chambers. Duet and Backing Vocals provided by Bill Chambers, Grant Richardson, Lyn Bowtell, James Gillard and Mark Punch.