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  • Writer's pictureGloria Tang

Steve McCormick's New Album 'Louisa' is Out

Steve McCormick has a lot going on with his Louisa album. Even though the eight-song project opens with a New Orleans-styled Cajun musical vibe, McCormick doesn’t just sing a straight-forward love song with it. Yes, it’s a song about a guy and a girl, but this is also a story song about an interracial couple. Nevertheless, McCormick finds a way to make this semi-social justice song still sound fun, as it incorporates plenty of soulful organ into its overall mix.

Listen to the Album here:

Social justice is very much on McCormick’s mind, as album closer finds him repeating the slogan, ‘Black

lives matter.’ All the protests over the last few years have impacted McCormick in a big way, one

surmises, as issues related to them have found their way in a few of his songs.

However, the album’s best song is one named “My Sister.” It also uses organ effectively. With it,

McCormick sings about his sister, whether it’s actually his own sister or about a woman/or women, in

general. One wonders if this is McCormick’s musical-social statement about the ‘me too’ movement.

This is because he worries about what might happen to a pretty girl. Sadly, feminine beauty can

sometimes make a woman a target for abuse. This track rolls to a bit of a reggae groove. It also includes

gospel-y backing vocals. Although McCormick doesn’t say what happens (or might happen) to her, he

does sing how everyone is looking at his sister. When he sings, “Everybody gets high with my sister,”

though, this line suggests there might be a particular girl in mind who’s also trouble. What’s so great

about the song, though, is just how much is left to the imagination. McCormick creates an ominous

mood and leaves it up to the listener to fill in the blanks and read between the lines. Sometimes, as

listeners, that’s all we really need – a sonic mood. Our imaginations can oftentimes take it from there.

Maybe we take it to a different place than the writer intended. And that’s okay, usually. Once a song

goes from an artist’s voice to a listener’s ear, it can take on a whole new life of its own. That’s what

makes this one so darn memorable.

Although McCormick many times has big social/cultural issues on his mind, one titled “Spend Some

Time,” which celebrates time spent with a lover or a loved one, has much lighter touch. McCormick has

a gravelly voice, which makes almost everything he sings sound a little moody and serious. However,

one gets the impression this lyric is sincere and sincerely simple. It also includes some wonderful slide

guitar on it. One other song chugs to a reggae beat. It is “There Is Smoke.” Once again, McCormick

doesn’t tell us what’s causing his concern. Nevertheless, we all recognize signs of trouble. McCormick

may just be encouraging us to watch for troublesome evidence. After all, Bob Dylan once reminded us

how we don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows. When trouble is in the wind, we

all know it.

Steve McCormick gives us a collection of quality songs that will make you think as much as they make

you feel.


Steve McCormick


-Dan MacIntosh


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