Nelson, BC’s Holly Hyatt has been performing as half of a duo with her husband and guitarist Jon Burden. They released four albums, the last one, Shufflin’ the Blues, charting strongly. Burden is still on board but this album is a major departure: Ms. Hyatt is rebranding herself as an R&B/Soul singer with horns, keyboards, backup singers and some very good songs. An important part of this project is Clinton Swanson, who arranged & played the horns, co-wrote a couple of the songs and co-produced, with Ms. Hyatt. Brandon Smith is the keyboard man, with Steve Wilson on drums. Ms. Hyatt plays bass. Her own “Wild Heart” leads off, a passionate, mid-tempo plea for two wild hearts to be together. “River Flows” was a single released last fall apparently, an attractive Memphis soul gem she wrote about being drawn back home. She tries her hand at an uplifting anthem with “It’s Time for Love”, urging people to open up to love. Swanson supplies a most effective trumpet fanfare and a sax solo for the fade. It isn’t the only song to make this kind of plea: “Create Unity” and “Rainbow” also hope for better times. The love song “So Close” features Burden on lead guitar and Hyatt on a falsetto vocal. An attractive soul blues called “Gravity” is another one of hers that deals with falling in love and features her beautifully multi-tracked vocals on the chorus. Hyatt clearly has a flair for this type of music, her songs are well written and her smooth, soulful and emotive voice showcases them very well indeed. If your tastes run to the more contemporary side of R&B & soul, check out www.hollyhyatt.com.

Loose Blues News - May 2019
May 2019 - Mike Goudreau