“Among The Flowers”
“Among the Flowers” is Janette’s newest release. This is a collection of traditional and two original songs, all with a strong theme of love lost, but therefore all the more precious. She has taken a somewhat classical turn with her arrangements this time, using flute, cello, piano and other instruments along with acoustic guitar, creating a rich and layered canvas on which to tell these stories. Each song features her unfailing gift of bringing the story to vibrant life, with beautiful vocals, passion, and wisdom won by experience.
Botany Bay. A very well known song but in her hands it’s true nature is revealed, a song of great courage, a future unknown and uncertain, and the bonds of love that span time and distance. Featuring acoustic guitar, accordion, it’s simple arrangement allows the voice and the emotion to shine.
Siuil a Ruin. A classic Irish song, given a faster tempo than is usually heard, even slightly bluesy. The song is lifted from a lament to one with attitude, an attack on the systems that wrench loved ones apart. It features guitar, brush kit, bass and accordion, pushing the beat and underscoring the anger and confusion of a lover pleading for the beloved’s safe return, yet helpless in the face of war and policy.
Too Ry Ahh. This song is also called ‘as I rode out’, one of at least 2 traditional songs with the same title. Janette has included both on the album. with a cheeky note regarding the confusion in the album notes. This song is about the ‘pretty fair maid’, who tries to win her love by means fair and foul. Janette has a beautiful arrangement here, with bell-like mallets, hip hop sounds and traditional percussion , along with accordion, to create a magical and pacey soundscape for the story. A most playful, wry and whimsical version.
So Much Water. An original song. This was written after a visit Janette made to her estranged mother. It is deeply personal, brutally honest, a very beautifully told story of the lasting effects of abuse, and of coming to an acceptance of the way things just are. It features piano and cello, supporting the theme of longing and the finding of solid ground.
Barbara Allen. A song beloved by many, and very special to Janette. She recorded a version of this song for a dear friend who is now passed away. She included it as a tribute to her friend Mia, and in homage to the power and blessings of songs passed down through countless generations. It is the tale of star-crossed lovers, who find each other finally in death to grow as flowers entwined for eternity. Lush strings, cello, flute and harp feature in the arrangement.
This Love. Another original. This song began in Scotland, and was finished and recorded in the Central Victorian high country! Janette was contemplating the nature of new and old love, and how new lovers always feel as if they have discovered love for the very first time. There is a darker side to this story too; that very few really know how to love….. The song features bass, percussion, acoustic guitar, and the chorus has a wonderful “dis-chord” as the statement.
As I Roved Out. The other song of the same name. This is a weaving ballad, the story of a man who foreswore his true love to marry the ‘lassie who had the land”. A situation not often encountered in traditional tales perhaps. It is tender, regretful, featuring accordion and cello.
Dream Angus. A beautiful Scottish lullaby that Janette has regularly sung at Maldon (Vic) Township’s annual Carols by Candlelight. When she sings it there you could hear a pin drop.
A Stor Mo Chroi. A classic Irish lament, Janette sings this almost a Cappella, with just a gentle wash of texture and distant harp. It is a beautiful song, so eloquently expressing loss, the surety of lasting love and the hope of reunion. This song is especially precious, and is dedicated to janete’s sister who died recently.