My Kind of Country

Country music from a fan's point of view since 2008

Album Review: Heidi & Ryan – ‘Heidi & Ryan’

Hedid & RyanThis is a new duo whose sound is based around Heidi’s voice, which has a really beautiful tone. Heidi and Ryan Greer met at a bluegrass festival in 2010, and their music is bluegrass with a strong gospel focus. She plays some lovely fiddle too, throughout the album.

They open with the charmingly nostalgic ‘Grandma’s Knee’, which reflects on childhood listening to stories and songs. ‘Pictures’ draws on the same theme.

The emotional ‘Come To Jesus’ is not the Mindy Smith song, but a beautiful account of finding God. The serious ‘Money Won’t’ is a beautifully sung ballad about the limitations of material desires. The pacy ‘Fire Down Yonder’ warns against damnation.

‘The Darkest Day’ is a somber first person account of the Crucifixion and Resurrection from the viewpoint of one of the men crucified with Jesus. The emotive and demanding ‘Will You Be Ready’ moves from Easter to the Second Coming.

The delicate ‘Sometimes Love Hurts’ is a moving story song about the limits of love. First we meet a dedicated overseas (probably missionary) doctor who gets no thanks for his untiring labours, then a woman who selflessly supports the husband who has let her down, and finally Jesus:

Mocked and laughed
Bout the one he loves the most
Love isn’t always a two way deal
You can’t judge it by the way you feel
Sometimes love hurts

They use the Alison Krauss arrangement for a cover of ‘Oh Atlanta’, which is nicely done but my least favorite track.

While Heidi sings most of the lead vocals, Ryan takes over on the earnest ‘Sowing Seeds’. While he is not as exceptional a vocalist as she is, his warm voice is more than listenable and the song is nice.

The set closes with a really beautiful version of ‘Somebody’s Praying’ which Ricky Skaggs recorded on his My Father’s Son album in 1991. This is another highlight.

This is an excellent debut album from a very promising new act.

Grade: A+

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2 responses to “Album Review: Heidi & Ryan – ‘Heidi & Ryan’

  1. Ken January 17, 2017 at 8:48 am

    Always nice to hear promising young talent carrying traditional music forward. Though there’s not anything unique here the duo delivers great harmony and some very good new songs.

    Heidi & Ryan Greer are a married couple that began performing together when they were just 16 years old in Heidi’s former band The Kentucky Mountain Trio. Here’s a sample of songs in their new album:

  2. James Robertson February 15, 2017 at 11:47 am

    While her voice is pleasant, I feel like I’ve heard it so many times before. Lee ann Womack or Alison Krauss comes to mind or Summer from Mountain Faith. I wish young female singers would try to sing like themselves and not someone else.

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