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Pick Me Up off The Floor
 
Now just to set the record straight, you may think the lower case "off" is a mistake. Well if it is, it was made by the brain trust at Apple Music because that is exactly what it looks like when you download the album. It's actually not surprising. Quirky, yes? But then again, so is this intriguing new collection from Norah Jones.
 
Ms. Jones states, "When you read Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein to your kids every night, weird rhymes float around in your head." 
 
Let's begin with "I'm Alive". Stripped down and raw, this collaboration with Jeff Tweedy is pure Jones. Laid back yet peppy, introspective yet hopeful. "I watch, I think, I dance and sometimes I drink." Story of our current lives?
 
"Hurts To Be Alone."  Norah says, "Lyrically, you know, sometimes you don't even realize you're going through something until you write a song about it ... it's a good way of processing." This one has a great groove, with a bit of R&B punch.
 
"Heartbroken, Day After." Man, this one is moody and melancholy (just as it should be). 
 
"This Life" (as we know it is over).  Absolutely breathtaking harmonies, with a bit of a church vibe going on. 
 
"To Live" was written for a session with Mavis Staples but they ended up not using it. "It was intended as a duet, but I liked my demo, and I thought 'Well, I'll just keep it.'" Reminiscent of "Don't Know Why" (which was also a demo that got released and launched her career. 
 
"Stumble On My Way" - definitely one of my favourites. A little gospel, a little bluesy, a lot intimate and fully enthralling.
 
This eclectic collection is indeed just that. A collection of stand-alone songs, never intended to have a unifying theme. "I was collaborating with different people and just trying to make singles rather than forcing an album. It's very freeing." Freeing, realistic, sometimes sad but also hopeful. A mellow, mysterious, mystical menagerie of musical moments, seamlessly woven together into a bewitching tapestry.
 
Pure Norah Jones.
 
Vickie van Dyke
morning host

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