Pauline Frechette's 'Song For Michael'

Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.

In this evening’s edition of the Independent Spotlight, we shine our gaze on Pauline Frechette, a renown pianist and composer who has recently released a new studio endeavor. Entitled ‘Song For Michael,’ the new track was arranged by David Campbell and aids in continuing Frechette’s reconnection with her roots. Pauline Frechette is her birth name, but she has become known to many over the years as Raven Kane, her ‘rocker’ persona. Now, this third-generation composer is bringing it back home with classical music and performance under her real name. Is ‘Song For Michael’ worth including in your music collection? Let’s dig into it and find out.

Frechette has performed with some of the finest talents of the twentieth century. Her prowess on the piano and as a vocalist has accented the likes of Paul McCartney, Cher, and Neil Diamond. Standing on her own, however, she is no less poignant or masterful. ‘Song For Michael’ is a beautiful, melancholy experience that highlights Frechette’s passionate performance with complete tact. Her lone piano is accompanied only by a very soft string section. The strings complement her musings in a gorgeous way; they rise and fall in waterfall fashion, sweeping back and forth behind Frechette’s piano to great effect.

Frechette’s performance is elegant in the purest sense of the word. For such a talented performer, she has embraced a unique element of brevity in her execution. ‘Song For Michael’ is just two and a half minutes, and at no point do her excursions feel ostentatious. Neo-classical performers can sometimes fall victim to listless instrumental meanderings. Even a talented pianist can wander into several minutes of exploration without fully fleshing out a composition’s emotional weight. Frechette, however, feels calculated, but organic. Her execution is exquisitely sharp. Every note feels important, every chord feels meaningful. That’s a notable feat.

‘Song For Michael’ is a poignant performance, an introspective one that feels pensive and a bit somber in nature. Due to Frechette’s aforementioned brevity, I’d argue the song is also easily accessible, even for a listener who isn’t prone to classical compositions. It’s a song very much worth having in your collection of music, and fortunately, you can do so because it’s on iTunes now. Go give it a listen - it’s a lovely affair.