Tupelo Honey review in Blank Newspaper March 2009


I’ve said it for years and no artist has shown me otherwise: no one does a love song like Van Morrison.  Perhaps the record that proves this the most is Tupelo Honey.  In the title track, Morrison pours out his heart and soul, declaring, “She’s as sweet as tupelo honey.  She’s an angel of the first degree.”  It’s not just the lyrics, but the fact that his voice makes it so that you can’t help but feel the emotion seeping into the cosmos.  I swoon when I hear it.

And it’s as true today as it was 30 years ago, it’s not popular to describe or depict gratitude for hearth and family the way Van Morrison does on Tupelo Honey.  Not just does he show appreciation for his woman as a lover, but also as the mother of his children.  In “You’re My Woman,” he sings, “You bore my child.  Lord, I want to thank you…no one else will do.”  And he continues, “I really love you.  My heart is for you.”

“Old, Old Woodstock” speaks of coming home and hugging your children with your wife waiting for you at the open kitchen door.  In “Starting a New Life” we find out that he’s been working hard, shoveling snow and feels that life has become stagnant.  With the springtime comes rebirth and it’s time to be…starting a new life.  “When That Evening Sun Goes Down” allows us a sneak peek into the end of the day and the simple act of relaxing with your lover, walking hand-in-hand.

Personally, I think this would have finished the record nicely, but then we get a jolt from “Moonshine Whiskey” that almost feels like an afterthought.  Maybe I say that just because the final track isn’t one of my favorites.  It’s not as sentimental as some of the other songs on the album, but it still declares, “I can’t wait to see that little darling of mine.”

Overall, Tupelo Honey seems to be an album that is well-suited for a cold winter night.  It’s not exactly a ragtop kind of album.  It serves as a reminder to appreciate your home and family and that chivalry is not dead.  That’s something that seems to be lost on many people theses days.  Guys, if this sounds boring to you, just ask yourself what your ladies would think.


~ by jessiekrueger on May 5, 2009.

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