Most medleys are too short and thus have too short takes
Transition within the medleys is quite frequently poor
When I scanned the new releases as of 23rd October 2020, I ran into the debut album by Charlotte Ave, Women of Country. The album contains ten medleys of country music songs. All songs have been sung by female country artists – and Charlotte Ave is a trio of three women as well. An interesting project which I felt is worth showcasing in here. The album is the long-play debut of the trio.
Charlotte Ave – About The Artist
It was really tough to find any substantial bio about the country music trio, even though it for example has 15,000 followers on Facebook and claims to have be big in regards of “views”, as their Facebook account states:
With over 15 million views, Charlotte Ave has quickly established itself to be much more than a viral sensation. Audiences worldwide continue to clamor for this Nashville based trio’s tight-knit harmonies and Country/Americana medleys and mashups.
The three members of the band are Olivia Charnes, Lauryn Evans and Mandy Allyn (now Mandy Mariscal). They also state a strong religious / Christian background on their website. The band seems to be quite new, all releases I found are as of 2020. Most of them are other medleys.
Charlotte Ave – Women of Country – Track by Track
The album contains ten tracks / medleys, which overall just last 25 minutes. Apart from the first track, each medley is dedicated to an individual artist.
1. Women of Country
As said above, this “title medley” is some sort of teaser for the whole album. The quick alteration of songs feels a bit disturbing to me. On the other hand, it is lovely to listen to the three voices. The medleys are practically a cappela – there are instruments in the background (here: acoustic guitar), but they are very subordinate in sound.
2. Dolly Medley
The Dolly Parton medley is maybe a nice example to explain how all medleys on the album work. The medley starts with Jolene, before it quotes the beginning of 9 to 5. It jumps back and forth again between these songs, followed by adding I will always love you. This makes this two minute track quite dynamic, but very often, it also feels a bit disturbing (you just would love to have a bit more time with one song). In this medley, I will always love you more or less acts as an outro to the song. It by that feels a bit like an “alien song” to be, also as the break before is quite a hard cut.
3. Shania Medley
The Shania Twain medley is the longest one on the album – it is the only track exceeding three minutes. The introduction of That don’t impress me much feels like a new song rather than a continuing of the same track. This is an effect you have in many of the medleys in here.
4. Taylor Medley
How could you spoil Taylor Swift? I may not be a die-hard Swiftie, but I like her early stuff and loved her recent folklore. This medley covers a some tracks I can really relate to, but the changes are just too abrupt and quick.
5. Carrie Medley
Though the way the three ladies interpret Carrie Underwood does not relfect the power this country-superlady has on stage and in her songs, it is still one my most favorite ones on the album. It feels more harmonic, more fluent to me.
6. Miranda Medley
I would comment very similarly on the Miranda Lambert medley than I do on the Carrie Underwood one: Just by the fact is comparably long (close to three minutes), it just gives a bit more space for the individual takes. However, the transitions are just softer in the Underwood compilation of classics. I prefer Miranda in real, here I go with Carrie.
7. Faith Medley
Faith Hill in 2:18 minutes: I enjoy the beginning of the medley – but then it more and more feels like pressing some missing parts within a short time.
8. Leanne Medley
The three ladies are so beautiful in the individual LeeAnn Rimes sections – the interpretations of How Do I Live? and Can’t Fight the Moonlight are just too beautiful – so I can even neglect that they push a bit too hard for I Need You.
9. Maren Medley
Maren Morris is the worst medley of all to me. Surely, she did not release as much music as most other artists in here, but compressing her musical career to 1:59 minutes (the shortie in this ten medley collection) just fails – finally Charlotte Ave pick just three or four songs for their short episodes anyway.
10. Chicks Medley
When Charlotte Ave intiially released this one, it was still the Dixie Chicks medley – not it is the Chicks Medley. Cowboy Take Me Away is the most beautiful intro of all medleys to me. Overall, I feel that the (Dixie) Chicks medley is one of the best ones on the album.
Charlotte Ave – Women of Country – Spotify
Here is the Spotify widget to the release:
Charlotte Ave – Women of Country – My View
Women of Country has easy ingredients: three ladies (who are by the way young and beautiful, might also be a promotion argument) with lovely voices singing songs to which most country music listeners can relate to. No doubt, it leads to a working concept and to quite nice tracks. Some are better, some are worse – which is also related to that some of the original tracks just suit better to that kind of close-to-a-capella interpretations. Is it a really homage to the great names of women country music – or just a cheap way to do self-marketing for a new group of three – definitely talented – young women? Finally, how could I answer that question – I am impressed by the vocal skills and harmonies, I feel the concept is interested, but I am not fully convinced by the product.