The opening track on Lucky 7, the latest album by ex-Fire KJ Denhert, evince hints of The Staples from the ‘70s. Although that hint doesn’t accurately describe the rest of Lucky 7, it does underscore the style of soul, folk, and jazz with undercurrents of gospel that permeate this splendid album.
Denhert uses the lush soft-pop folk influence as a focal point to craft the twelve tunes on Lucky 7. She shares a version of “Over the Rainbow,” a popular favourite for singers to create their own spin of (after the extraordinary success of the blended song with “What a Wonderful World” as sung by Iz Kamakawiwo’ole – If you haven’t heard it, you NEED to track it down). Denhert’s version is a smoky-jazz tune that adds favourably to the song’s long line of variable versions. “He’s Not Coming Home” is a brilliantly bittersweet piece with a Roberta Flack feel that will have you returning to the song frequently. Its theme of severed friendships because of time and space separations will hit home to many.
Lucky 7 deserves attention for it is a grand collection of superior songs that not only sound great but also have important things to share; things that we all have in out heart’s closets. I’m suggesting the album to help open those closets and as a moment to encourage the enjoyment of the bittersweet aspects of life and its many revered memories, even if they bring forth a few sighs. Denhert’s refreshing approach to old-school styles of folk, blues, and jazz is the highlight of Lucky 7. Every track is an experience with life and a heart-felt love affair with the respected music to convey the depths of that raging river.