• Bryon Harris

Kate Magdalena - 'This Is My Rebel Song'

Review by Daniel Deprè & Staff

“This Is My Rebel Song” is a sweet and gentle folk tune that is as comforting as a lullaby. It’s a song of heartbreak and frustration but performed with such finesse that it’s impossible not to fall in love with it. The arrangement is minimalistic which really allows this song to be low key and soft. The instruments chosen are all as delicate yet bold as Kate Magdalena’s impressive vocals.

Lyrically this song is inspired by a song written by Sinead O’Connor. England and Ireland have had a tumultuous relationship for many years. This song speaks to the woes of dealing with that struggle, under the clever guise of a hard English man who doesn’t appreciate this Irish woman who loves him so much. “Ah please talk to me Englishman, what good will shutting me out get done, meanwhile crazies are killing our sons”. The lyrics beautifully express how dispiriting it can be when your passionate love isn’t reciprocated, all while referring to the connection that England and Ireland share.

The instruments are perfectly chosen as they are all warm and serene. The song begins with a solo cello playing absolutely beautifully over strumming acoustic guitars. The performance of the cello is incredibly warmhearted and thrives both when in the forefront as the melodic voice and as a background texture. Supporting the solo cello and the vocals are Acoustic guitars and a bass guitar.

Kate Magdalena sings with such passion as her voice is shimmering with grief. She really shows of her range in the chorus’ where she goes up higher in her range and still maintains her calm and gentle vocal style. “This Is My Rebel Song” is a song that, like so many of us, wishes for peace among our neighbors and Kate Magdalena and producer Billy Smiley created a stunning arrangement to express this desire.

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About Kate Magdalena

Kate Magdalena is an independent singer-songwriter out of New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area, whose songs have been aired on country radio nationally. Most at home in folk-pop and adult contemporary, she calls her genre ‘Timely Americana’, as she is inspired to write for the particular times in which we live. Kate was selected by BWH Music (Boston) as one of 2020 Women to Watch: Best Female Independent Artists, and her recent album “The Water Is Wide” was just awarded Best Album in the Adult Contemporary genre in the 2020 W.A.M. Awards. The album, released in August 2020, contains 9 songs of water and land, including the iconic covers “Downtown” and “I Know A Heartache When I See One,” as well as several original songs crafted from well-loved poems like “The Waking,” (nominated for Best Song, Social Justice 2020 W.A.M.) “Sea Fever,” and “Cloths of Heaven.” On this album is also Magdalena’s song “Backstory” about some of what we are witnessing now; the song was nominated for a W.A.M. Award in the social justice category.

In November of 2019, Magdalena released her second album of songs, with Grammy nominated producer Billy Smiley (Johnny Cash, WhiteHeart, Clay Aiken) titled A Larger Dance with singles – “Be the Lark“, “New Earth“, “Battle Hymn“, “Streets of Any Town“. The full album includes songs by Joan Armatrading, Leonard Cohen, Sinead O’Connor, and Crosby, Stills & Nash. The title track A Larger Dance was chosen by BWH Music as one of the best songs of 2019.


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