Art Bergman

REVIEW: Art Bergman “ShadowWalk”


Art Bergman – ShadowWalk

After 30 years of marriage, Art’s wife Sherri passed away unexpectedly in 2022. This 12-track CD is an ode to her memory.

It represents what people who are in love feel when they lose something dear to them. They can celebrate that life but before that takes place they go through a darkness that includes grief & desolation. The award-winning Mr. Bergman uses his music effectively to help heal himself.

Art Bergman

Produced by Russell Broom & Wes Smith ShadowWalk (Drops Sept 29–Weewerk Records) the set was recorded in British Columbia. Poet Patricia Kay helped shape the message & songwriter Donna Kerbel helped pen 1-track. The LP takes on the same kind of musical beauty & somberness that Cidny Bullens’ great Somewhere Between Heaven & Earth, was created. That LP came after Cidny’s 11-year-old daughter passed from cancer. The LP’s music was reinforcing despite the sadness that surrounded each melody.

Bergman opens with “Jagged/One,” with ragged guitar notes to help dispel anger & ethereal wisps that indicate Art talking to himself plaintively, alone as we all do when you try to make sense of things. As if another day has begun despite it all “Death of a Siren” & “Impotence,” have their differing melodic poignancies with a pinch of anger as well but there’s also a benevolence within each.

When someone departs who was loved & missed there’s no “getting over it.” You’ll move on, but you carry a personality spirit with you…forever. I know. I went to a record show months after my Uncle passed. I fingered through boxes of vinyl & saw 4 big-band radio transcription records from the 1940s. A dollar each. I bought them for him. But suddenly, I remembered — he died. That shook me. I forgot. But I felt a joy inside me later for having thought of him anyway. Because he was still with me.

This is where Art will come. It takes time. A videotape, a phone message with her voice. If he has children he might see her smile someday on their faces.

The music has some awkward moments. Conveying difficult feelings is not easy. A profound loneliness follows even in the melodies. In the home & memory, there are many areas where their scent still is. A perfume or talc they wore. Their personal touches remain in photos they hung, mail they still get, food they purchased & holiday cards they bought but never sent.

“Love3,” & “Raw Naked Monday” are some of the beauties. A slightly different Bergman – but he is a consummate artist.

Highlights – “Jagged/One,” “Death of a Siren,” “Love3,” “Impotence,” “WinterFire,” “Raw Naked Monday” & “CandleLight.”

Musicians – Paul Rigby (pedal steel), Aidan Farrell (vocals), Owen Owen Owen (bass), Adam Drake (drums), Sunny Matharu (table) & Katie Mosehauer & the Glass Heart String Orchestra (strings).

Color image by Sharon Steele. CD @ Song samples/Bandcamp +

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