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Anna Lynch

Anna Lynch – 2013 ( Self-released)

Reviewed by Robert Wooldridge

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CDs by Anna Lynch

The sell-titled debut release from Alaska-based singer/songwriter Anna Lynch is a mix of bluegrass, folk, western swing and a touch of rockabilly. Bluegrass is prominent throughout, particularly on "Never Know" and "Olivia," featuring impressive solos from band mate Peter Hamre on mandolin, and "Gone and Back," spotlighting Amanda Kerr (fiddle).

Lynch is also effective on such folk ballads as "Abilene," which tells of a dysfunctional relationship between a man and woman ("She will bring him coffee/When he asks for tea"), and "Not a Love Song" about lost love ("They say that when it comes to hearts/True love's never ripped apart/Life just gets in the way/So that's why all I can say is/I'll never write a love song").

"Baby Don't Go To Work" begins as a folk tune and slowly transitions into a bluesy western swing, while on "How Do I Get Some," Hamre displays his versatility with a rockabilly style lead guitar solo. One of the stronger compositions is the moody "Rag-Doll" in which Lynch identifies with the flaws seen in a tattered toy ("I'm looking at a rag-doll sitting on a shelf/Seeing all the stains wishing I didn't see myself/But I'm in a world where people always see/The wholes and patches I got keeping me tied").

Lynch wrote all but 1 of the 11 tracks, an effective reworking of the traditional folk ballad "Pretty Saro" being the lone cover. In addition to Hamre and Kerr the instrumentation is stellar throughout, particularly from Garren Volper (upright bass) and Dusty Rider (pedal steel). With Lynch's strong tunes and pleasant vocals, this is an impressive debut.