With the decision for Heather Stewart to make the entertainment industry her career of choice also came the decision for Stewart to create her own music. Stewart started writing her own songs and Stewart eventually created her first release from 2008 entitled Life of the Party. With the success of that release, Stewart decided to create a new album.
When creating her latest release of What It is, Heather Stewart took her songs into two different studios that had their own histories that made them ideal locations to record, first at the Sound Factory and the second at Sunset Sound, both in Los Angeles. With being in both of these studios, the recording process took on a special vibe that helped add magic to the music.

To help Heather Stewart bring her music to life, Stewart called upon guitarists Blake Mills, Marty Rifkin and Joshua Grange and drummer Aaron Sterling as well as bassist Sean Hurley who has spent time performing with the likes of John Mayer and Vertical Horizon. The resulting sound of Stewart’s music combines elements of musicians like Bonnie Raitt, Sheryl Crow as well as others.

The latest album from Heather Stewart, What It Is, begins with the album’s title track. “What It Is” The track features a slow pace that adds to the blues-flavored music of song. While the song has a very relaxed feel to it, Stewart’s vocal delivery is still very strong. The results are very similar to something that you could easily expect from Bonnie Raitt, with a little less twang to the song.

The pace of the music on What It Is picks up with the next song of “Tell Me Who”. The resulting track has a vibe that could really remind you of something that would have been created by The Traveling Wilburys: the twang of the guitar on the track could easily have come from George Harrison while the lyrics of the song sound like something that would have come from that band’s first album. The opening seconds of the track would have fit with songs like “End of the Line” and “Handle with Care” from The Traveling Wilburys. The track has a very commercial quality to it and the simplicity to the lyrics makes them easy to sing along with. “Tell Me Who” would be an ideal candidate for a single off the album.

With the song “Stand Up,” Stewart lets more than a little of her independent spirit out as she writes a song about being who you want to be. Like other songs before it, “Stand Up” has the appeal and message that could make the track into a definite anthem for women’s rights. The folk-rock music for the track also has mass appeal for all music listeners.

After a track that features a very strong message about being strong, Stewart follows that song with one of the strongest tracks on the album. “Back and Blue” picks up a lot more rock and roll feeling than any of the tracks that came before it. The bass and drums create a very strong beat for the song that seems to take the listener back to a more creative time in the history of rock and roll as the song feels as if it would have fit in with songs from bands that helped would have been part of the British Invasion. The resulting track of “Black and Blue” could easily have been written by The Animals as it has the same type of strong feeling as the song “House of the Rising Sun” has.

Another track off of What It Is that could easily end up being a single is the song “A Little More”. The heartbreaking lyrics about the singer coming to the realization that a relationship is ending are very universal. The song features a very strong twang that comes from the lead guitar on the track. That twang gives the song enough of a Country music feel that the song could easily be a crossover track. It is that “crossover” appeal that makes “A Little More” one of the strongest tracks on What It Is from Heather Stewart.

The new release from Heather Stewart, What It Is, features many different styles in the tracks of the album. With each change in the feel of the album, the listener gets to experience a different side to Stewart’s personality. Those different sides to her personality help make the release very well-rounded and enjoyable to listen to.

Review by Matheson Kamin
Rating: 5 stars (out of 5)

To get just a glimpse of Heather Stewart’s new release “What It Is,” which will be released October 8, 2013, here is a video of Stewart performing the title track of the album with guitarist Keaton Simons. CLICK HERE.

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Comments
  1. Thanks so much for the review Matheson! Glad you liked the album!!!!

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