On the theme of music adoration, I’m feeling the need to share my new favorite album. I had the opportunity to see Hayley Sales perform live at the musical festival this past weekend, and instantly felt my toes tapping along to the infectious beat of her newest cd, “When the Bird Became a Book”.
Unbelievably, and unlike many “artists” on the music scene these days, Hayley’s voice is as flawless live as it sounds on the album. Soaringly beautiful and whistful in turn, Sales is a joy to listen to. I enjoyed watching her perform immensely, and I, often a passive observer to what is going on around me- especially in large crowds- clapped along to the beat. Performing with only a bassist as accompaniment and her own guitar (or ukele, as was the case for a few of her songs), she made me really wish I could play the guitar. Alas, I do not, and my voice is my only instrument- and I’ve since been singing along to Hayley Sales songs ad nauseum.
As soon as I got home, I went on Itunes and bought her album. Just as I expected, I was hooked from the first note. The title song is catchy and draws in the listener with lyrics such as “Say tomorrow is today/that rainy is sunbeams/I’d rather be the fool than foolish”- the song captures both the light and heavy of human nature in a cheerful package.
One of my favorite songs on the album is another to which I can completely relate- “First Flight Home”: “All this time I’ve wanted to be/ Out there, living on my own/ Doing the things I wanted to do/ No one telling me I’m wrong/ But after a while I found/ The shine of what’s new starts where it ends/ After a while that grass on the other side/ Don’t look quite as glorified/ As it did on the other side”
The lyrics gave me chills the first time I listened to them. The song pretty much chronicles a recent journey of mine- the feeling of needing to escape and then finding myself needing to be back home. Though she talks about a love in the song, I find that it makes me think about a different kind of love to which I needed to return- the love of my home, my family, and myself.
Other songs stand out on the album, such as “Not in His Garden” which shines as an environmentally conscious nod to the goings-on of the consumeristic world around us. “Simple Song” pays homage to the basics in life that make it worth living- love and happiness. The whole album speaks to the joy of living in the present moment and appreciating what you have. A lesson that is often most difficult to learn, this message really hits home for me, having spent most of the past year learning that “living life’s not a goal/ it’s been happening all along the way” (excerpt from “What You Want” from Sales’ album “Sunseed”)
Whether its the happy strumming beat, the joyous lyrics or Hayley Sales’ gorgeous voice that catapulted this album to the top of my favorites list, I have a feeling that I’ll be listening for a while.