If you have time for just one song by Ben Noble, make it Little One. As he says, it’s a story song presumably about his own three year old. It’s a gentle song, too loud for a lullaby but the kind of song you’d listen to with your own little one cuddling on the couch. It showcases his falsetto range that produces an ethereal, soothing sound. The strings (especially on the album but also live) have a dream quality that plays against an otherwise straightforward tune. The lyrics are touching and sweet. The song is like a little vacation.
Luckily I had time for a few more watching Noble play at the Bryant Lake Bowl with a bass player, keyboardist and drummer. They played many songs from his latest CD, Whisky Priest. Keeping with a theme, he led with Daughter, which is another pensive almost melancholy song. Again the song features his unique voice. The lyrics, the voice, the guitar are very tender.
Noble’s song writing is very personal but it’s a case of when personal detail can make something so universal. Many of the tunes are inherently sad. Good listening for a cold winter afternoon.