- Bryon Harris
Michele D’Amour and the Love Dealers - “Hard Times”
Review by Anthony Nguyen & Staff
BWH Music Group and World National Indie Radio (WNIR) are hosting 'Songs For Change' radio special during the month of November. Music can influence, and even change, people, movements, and society. Sharing songs about peace and social justice will ultimately remind the world of the importance of fairness, love and unity. Michele D'Amour's song "Hard Times" is one of the amazing songs that will be featured on this special radio program.
“Hard Times” contains a simmering intensity that is never dispersed. A beautiful piano overture sets the tone and cleanses the pallet before the song steamrolls into a driving, marching rumination. “Hard Times” is sonically complex and bubbling over with fullness without choking any of the space. A gritty, laid back rhythm section, wailing organ, and crisp guitars create a musical landscape over which D’Amour can deliver her message. An inspired tenor saxophone solo also elevates the song and injects a new perspective.
Lyrically, “Hard Times” is challenging. Provocative and brutally honest, this song reminds listeners of instances of intolerance and hatred. “Not long ago some people gathered to pray, never thinking they wouldn’t see another day. A man stood among them and shot them down simply because their skin was brown.” The subject matter is important and the message is delivered in a way that allows the listener to feel empowered to stand up for positive change.
The elements of “Hard Times” are comprised of the same material as classic 70s blues and R&B anthems. This song refines and hones a concept while placing a unique spin on timeless architecture. Expert recording and mixing techniques allow a huge sonic picture to be perfectly in focus. D’Amour’s vocals (along with the “call and response” back up vocals) cast a raw and honest feeling over the lyrics. There is a real believability to this track…a relentless song for relentless times.
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About Michele D’Amour and the Love Dealers
Dubbed "the poetess of the blues," Michele D'Amour was steeped in music in the womb and has maintained her love of the blues genre throughout her life, bolstered by her father's extensive record collection. At the tender age of six, inspired by a now-forgotten incident, the precocious youngster penned her first song, "My Mom is So Mean." Growing up in rainy Seattle in such circumstances with two older sisters to boot, the blues gave Michele an outlet for transcending life's trials and helping others as well.
In 2011, the band Michele D'Amour and the LoveDealers formed when the stars aligned -- Michele's lifelong affinity for the blues, her experience writing and performing, and the emergence of the right founding band members. The band has since released six albums; Michele's songs have won several songwriting awards, including a John Lennon grand prize. The band has also received awards, such as Best Blues Band from LA Music Critic in January 2019.