Claudia Nygaard: Let the Storm Roll In
Written by Ellen Marie Hawkins
(photo courtesy of www.claudianygaard.com)
I spend a considerable amount of time listening to the music I review; put it on repeat for
at least three or four hours to get to know the music and decide what I want to say. After
listening to Claudia on repeat, I emerged disorientated. Usually, I listen to music to apply
a new perspective to my own problems, to be encouraged, or to just find a voice for all
that I’m feeling but can’t express musically. With Claudia, I completely forgot about
myself while listening to her.
Claudia is a storyteller. If that’s truly what country or folk is, then label her as such. Her
music triggers feelings, as stories often do, but she also takes you to another time with her
voice, melodies, and assortment of instruments used. She evokes emotion, but by using
stories about other people. My favorites are “J.C.,” a song about a child who innocently
looks up to a man as a hero; not as a savior necessarily, but for being who he was and the
memories he inspired. “What’s Cookin,’” made me smile; about a love found in a diner,
in a simpler time when carving initials into a cup meant you were a couple and it seems
perfectly plausible to leave responsibilities behind because you are in love. I love the
bass in this song, the guitars reminiscent of the 50’s style rock.
“Big Country,” the first song on the album, uses instruments native to varying countries
to tell the story of how this country was developed and what it’s built upon. Isolating
the boudhran (an Irish drum-I had to look that up) or pennywhistle in turn, Claudia uses
the music to support her story, and the listener leaves the song feeling as though they’ve
taken a walk through history, and not only through the country but through music as well.
It’s creative and it works amazingly well.
With old school principles and a strong foundation of talent, Let the Storm Roll In is an
experience and a journey. It’s a nice place to go to get away for awhile. Albums like this
are timeless and rich and meant to be enjoyed with eyes closed and a willingness to lose
yourself in someone else’s story or romance. Or find yourself. Whatever the case may be.
Please visit www.claudianygaard.com for more information.