Posts Categorized: music review

Madilyn Paige CD ~Review and Blog Tour

20 Feb, 2015 by in highway records, madilyn paige, music, music review, young adult Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Highway Records in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Madilyn Paige CD ~Review and Blog Tour

Madilyn Paige EP

Published by Highway Records on February 3, 2015
Genres: Young Adult
Source: Highway Records
Buy the Book
This stunning self-titled debut EP features a set of tunes notable for their raw emotion and beautiful soundscapes. Madilyn wrote or co-wrote every song on the album, drawing from her own struggles as a teenager and her heartfelt expressions of the joy she finds in life. The first track, "Irreplaceable," begins with aching introspection and soars to an assurance of self-worth; the following track, "Foolish Game," was written right after Madilyn left the TV show The Voice and gives insight into the inevitability of discouragement in life and the realization that you can rise above the games that people play. An epic movie score string section combines with powerful rhythms on "Undercover," a breathtaking song about overcoming sadness and seeking the light all around you. The final track, "Little Things," playfully reminds us that the little things in life are the source of true joy.

This CD has been our soundtrack for the past month. My whole family loved it and when I went to write the review, it was missing. Whisked away by my son. Madilyn Paige has a mature, beautiful voice for her age, reminiscent of Colbie Caillet. The message of her feature song Irreplaceable teaches youth that they don’t need to fit in, they just need to be themselves. We are irreplaceable. There is only one who can fill our shoes. Absolutely one of our favorite EP’s ever. We listen to it non-stop.


Madilyn lived in Japan as a young child and has taken up singing since moving back to the U.S. She loves making music videos and short films with her friends and has performed in various local competitions.

Follow Madilyn on Twitter at @MadilynPaige or on her web page.


CD Review~ Classic: The Rock Album by Jenny Oaks Baker

10 Apr, 2014 by in cd, deseret book, jenny oaks baker, music review 2 comments

I received this book for free from Shadow Mountain in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

CD Review~ Classic: The Rock Album by Jenny Oaks Baker

Classic: The Rock Album

by Jenny Oaks Baker
Published by Shadow Mountain on April 7, 2014
Genres: Classical, Music
Source: Shadow Mountain
Buy the Book
Grammy-nominated #1 Billboard Violinist Jenny Oaks Baker takes her style to an all-new level with her new release, Classic: The Rock Album. Featuring classic rock favorites like Stairway to Heaven (Led Zeppelin), Sweet Child of Mine (Guns and Roses), and Yesterday (The Beatles), you won't believe your ears as one of the country's most accomplished and acclaimed violinists combines her insane talent with the heart-pumping tunes that have defined a genre for generations.

I have to admit when this CD first arrived, we were a little skeptical. I loved the photography and the red accents on the cover–but classical and rock together, by a violinist? We threw it in on our road trip and took a listen. I played violin all through my childhood and have two girls in lessons right now. They were impressed. “That’s the violin?”

Jenny gives young musicians something to aspire to. Well-known songs we’ve heard on the radio being played on a classical instrument. My boys pointed out that Jenny likes to hit high notes! My husband liked it so much he downloaded Kashmir as his new ring tone and bought tickets to her concert. Everybody Hurts by REM took me way back to my own music obsessed days.

Overall we thought Classic: the Rock Album was a diversion…one that we enjoyed! It’s unique and fun. A wonderful way to get your family to listen to beautiful concert music and still be “cool.”



– Kashmir/Four Season (Led Zepplin/Vivaldi)
– Everybody Hurts (REM)
– Sweet Child of Mine (Guns and Roses)
– Liverpool Suite
– Pinball Wizard (The Who)
– Imagine (John Lennon)
– Stairway to Heaven (Led Zepplin)
– Let It Be, Eleanor Rigby, Yesturday, All You Need is Love, Hey Jude (The Beatles)
– Bridge Over Troubled Water (Simon and Garfunkel)
– Fields of Gold (Sting)
– Clocks (Coldplay)

Listen to samples at Deseret Book’s website

About the Artist


Grammy Nominated Artist Jenny Oaks Baker is one of America’s most accomplished violinists. She received her Master of Music degree from the renowned Juilliard School in New York City and her bachelor’s degree in violin performance from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.

She has released eleven albums since 1998. They consistently chart on Billboard, including the #1 spot on the Top Classical Albums chart. Her album Wish Upon a Star earned a nomination for the 54th GRAMMY Awards for Best Pop Instrumental Album.

Jenny Oaks Baker has performed as a soloist at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and with the Jerusalem Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Utah Symphony, and the internationally acclaimed Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Jenny performed as a first violinist with the National Symphony Orchestra for seven years before resigning to devote more time to her young family. Jenny and her husband Matthew have four children.


CD Review: He Is Risen by Mormon Tabernacle Choir

04 Apr, 2014 by in adult, deseret book, music, music review 1 comment

CD Review: He Is Risen by Mormon Tabernacle Choir

He Is Risen

by Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Published by Deseret Book Genres: LDS
Source: Deseret Book
Buy the Book
Featuring heartwarming and uplifting hymns like Christ the Lord Is Risen Today, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, and He is Risen, your Easter holiday will be filled with true remembrance and thankfulness for Christ, His life and the love He shows for each of God's Children.

Triumphant, meaningful and moving music release for Easter by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir with Orchestra at Temple Square. The first song “Christ the Lord is Risen Today” makes the bold and reassuring statement that Christ the Lord is risen. With 6 tracks this CD combines both familiar hymns with lesser known songs about the Savior. The choir brings a spirit of Spring and new beginning. I found myself buoyed up by the heralding voices that sound like angels. Track 6 “Worthy Is the Lamb That Was Slain” is a familiar tune for me around Christmas time from Handel’s Messiah. I enjoyed hearing it at a new time of year, celebrating the triumph over death.

Definitely recommended as an Easter basket stuffer and a CD that will fill your home with peace. Thanks to Deseret Book for this wonderful gift in exchange for an honest review.


About the Author

The 360 members of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir represent men and women from many different backgrounds and professions and range in age from 25 to 60. They reflect a medley of unique lives and experiences and are brought together by their love for singing and their faith. Their incomparable voices are the common chord that unites to form the choral group known all over the world as the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir originated in the mid-19th century in Salt Lake City. As the Latter-day Saints moved west, Church President Brigham Young included musicians among members of the advance parties. Consequently, a small choir first sang for a conference of the Church in the Salt Lake Valley on August 22, 1847, just 29 days after the first group arrived. The origins of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir may be found in the desire and commitment of early converts to include appropriate music in both sacred and secular events.

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir has appeared at 13 world’s fairs and expositions, performed at the inaugurations of five U.S. presidents, and sung for numerous worldwide telecasts and special events. Five of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s recordings have achieved “gold record” and two have achieved “platinum record” status. The most popular was the Grammy-Award-winning 1959 release of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” with the Philadelphia Orchestra.

For more information visit the Mormon Tabernacle Choir fan page on Facebook


Mercy River Blog Tour and Giveaway

06 Jan, 2014 by in mercy river, music review 2 comments

Published by Deseret Book


Come Alive

On the heels of their hit album Higher, Mercy River is back with mesmerizing harmonies and upbeat vocal arrangements. Their new album features inspirational favorites and original songs that highlight the talents of this singing sisterhood.

Sing It Out
Speak Life
How Deep the Father’s Love For Us
Walk You Through the Night
Who I Am
Holy Ground
Reason For the World
Walking On Sunshine


I first heard Mercy River onstage live at the Deseret Book flagship’s store Ladie’s Night. They are three moms with great voices and a inspirational message. The CD Come Alive has several cover tracks of songs I’ve heard before, but my favorite was Walk You Through the Night. How fun to see my old college roommate and friend Cherie Call have one of her original songs covered by another LDS artist! I also genuinely enjoyed the parts where the three from Mercy River sing acapella.  Sometimes you don’t need loud, catchy music or synthesized instruments. You can just hear the tone and enjoy the clarity of human song. I’m grateful for what this group is trying to do which is give us an alternative to the “sirens” of the world and those things we wouldn’t let our family listen to. My children sang along after having only listened once, which means they enjoyed Come Alive. The jewel cover image shows how the singer’s happiness and goodness shines through. Great job again Russ Dixon! I can’t wait to hear more original songs from Mercy River in the future. Thank you Deseret Book for the review copy.



come alive tour banner Tour Schedule


About Mercy River

With 13 children between them, it’s amazing that Whitney Permann, Brooke Stone, and Soni Muller have time for anything other than runny noses, sock hunts, and prying suckers off the van floor. But music has been a part of each of their lives since childhood, and is now a strong presence in their homes.

The three friends met while singing in the Jenny Phillips Choir and there found a common love for tight harmonies and sharing the gospel through song. Over the past five years, Mercy River has traveled all over the United States and Canada as a highly sought after ensemble, performing for thousands of people while testifying of the Savior. Each member of the group brings several years of experience performing, writing, and directing hundreds of firesides and concerts—as well as recording on dozens of inspirational albums.

Their self-titled debut album was released in May 2008. “Beautiful Dawn,” was released in March of 2010. Their third album, “Higher” was released with rave reviews in February 2012. Mercy River is back with mesmerizing harmonies and upbeat vocal arrangements in “Come Alive”.

Website * Facebook * Twitter

Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 1/26/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the authors. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.


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