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Gretchen Peters

The Secret of Life – 1996 (Imprint)

Reviewed by George Hauenstein

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CDs by Gretchen Peters

Songrwiter Gretchen Peters has made quite a name for herself on Music Row. The hit country tunes that she has penned include "Let That Pony Run" (Pam Tillis), "You Don't Even Know Who I Am" (Patty Loveless), The 1995 CMA Song of the Year, "Independence Day" (Martina McBride) and "Chill of an Early Fall" (George Strait). None of the hits are on this album. This is not a 'knock you over' country record. The arrangements do not contain the signature country instrumentation. Peters' voice and her lyrics are what will draw fans. She delivers her songs with emotion and credibility. "Uncivil War" is particularly poignant, dealing with the problems that a family faces when a marriage is in trouble. She wrote all of the songs, except for Steve Earle's "I Aint Ever Satisfied." Favorites are the title track, "Waiting For The Light To Change" and "Room With a View." They are catchy and may well end up being hits for more established artists one day. So many hit songwriters have tried making their own records lately, most with limited success. Peters deserves better.