Susan Enan Heading for NZ & Oz

There are many old jokes about music but in my family the one I liked was how “Johnny likes both kinds of music – country & Western. ”

So the good news growing up in my house was that we were all drenched in music – the bad news is that much of it was c & w as my Dad was (and is still) a guitarist and a Hank Williams fan. As I’ve got older I found artists like Gillian Welch, Ryan Adams, Over the Rhine, Great Lake Swimmers (tks Steve) and many others that I really, really like.

Producers like T-Bone Burnett have led me to other artists like Natalie Merchant, Cassandra Wilson and even the Robert Plant – Alison Krauss album a few years back.

What I’ve discovered is that that I love music even more than ever and discovering, playing and listening to tracks by everyone from Ramsey Lewis to Living Colour makes my life a much richer and more wonderful experience.

In my book the difference between good music and great music are the arrangements.

Susan Enan (singer / songwriter ) caught my ears a few years back (2006?) when a song of hers was used as a promo for a Tv Series called Bones. That song was called “Bring on the Wonder” and it had instant cut through. That it had Sarah McLachlan on backing vocals didn’t hurt but it took until last year for the album to be finished.

Susan is a musical perfectionist and it was worth the wait. What I like about the album is what she leaves out. I love that I can hear ( in my head ) all kinds of conterpoints that aren’t being played but they are there in the musical DNA.

Not sure if counterpoints are the correct term but what it sounds like (to me) is a musical equivalent of painting where colours and light allow the art to breathe and somehow illuminate the invisible.

There are 11 songs on the “Plainsong”. It is hard for me to pick a favourite. Each song somehow has that ability to shed light on  different terrain depending on what time of the day you play it.

On balance it is a late night album. From the “thin places” as a friend of mine would say.

“Cling to what to treasure – treasure what you hold”

is from Skin, Bone & Silicone which is one of those show stopping stories that Paul Kelly used to be famous for.

Plainsong is included in Paste Magazine’s ‘Eight Criminally Underrated Albums From 2009’ list and listed as one the top 50 albums from 2009 at

This review from Paste Magazine may be helpful.

One of the great things about music and technology now is that it allows performers to make direct connections around the world and take their chances where they find them.

For a few months now Susan has been doing house concerts in US & Europe, UK and in Feb/ March 2011 – New Zealand and Australia will get to see hear her. This vblog below is from the current tour.

If you are in Auckland let me know what you think. There will definitely be some concerts here.

Check the first video in the series where Susan gives a little more background.