“A Quiet Path” is the seventh album release for solo piano artist Lynn Tredeau. After being awarded Best Solo Piano Album 2018 and 2019 at Zone Music Reporter, she spent the year 2020 focusing on single releases and collaborating with other artists. Recent health issues delayed the release of her “A Quiet Path,” but it was well worth the wait. This is a collection of small pieces that capture the essence of life’s small moments because, in the artist’s words, “in each and every one of those moments is a world of possibility, love and grace.” The melodies are simply beautiful; nothing is rushed, and everything feels “just right.” This is music meant to inspire feelings of serenity and contentment, and it does just that– and so very beautifully!
The album opens with the melancholic “Kites and Balloons.” This put me in mind of a memorial balloon ceremony, in which family and friends might release balloons symbolizing letting go of their lost loved one. “Dappled Shade” evokes the dance between sparkling rays of light (represented by the bright upper register of the piano) and dark shadows cast by trees (represented by the deep velvety tones of the instrument) on a wooded path. The nostalgic “Meadowlark” brought to mind the wide-open spaces of the American west; “Many Faces of Cassiopeia,” named for the constellation in the northern sky, is quiet and contemplative, almost a lullaby with its gently rocking ostinato accompaniment and tender, songlike melody. “Moving Mountains” refers to the challenges imposed by accomplishing something in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. The music begins softly, almost questioningly, gradually builds with a spirit of determination and optimism, and concludes in a glorious strain of victory and triumph. If I had to pick a favorite piece from the album, “Moving Mountains” might just be it!
The midnight hour is sometimes referred to as the “Hush of Night;” this piece is exquisite in its simplicity, as we look back on triumphs and tribulations the day just past and embark on a fresh new beginning. “Moon Gazing” is another simple beauty; just as staring at the moon can relieve anxiety and stress and improve relaxation, so can listening to this music! “Rest a Moment” is clearly an invitation, at once healing, calming and reassuring. “Sunday on the Island” took me back to an early morning stroll along a quiet beach, with nothing but the waves at my feet and an occasional seagull for company: my mind wandering, all my cares floating away with the ocean breezes, my spirit positively soaring. According to Wikipedia, “Saudade is a deep emotional state of nostalgic or profound melancholic longing for an absent something or someone that one cares for and/or loves. Moreover, it often carries a repressed knowledge that the object of longing might never be had again.” Tredeau’s haunting interpretation of “Saudade” resonates with whispers of sorrow and echoes of grief. The album’s final track, “Aeonian” is an eloquent expression of time never ending and the perfect conclusion to this lovely collection.
“A Quiet Path” is a welcome respite from the trials and turmoil of the past several months, as well as a powerful reminder of the things in life that are truly most important. Very highly recommended!