• Bryon Harris

Kathy Bell & Bob McGilpin - America She's Crying

Review by Matt Wong & Staff

“America She’s Crying” begins with banjo, acoustic guitar, string bass, and kick drum, with fiddle taking the lead on the intro. Continuing on from the spirited intro, Bob McGilpin, who wrote the music, enters on vocals with confidence. The fiddle then slips back in for a quick interlude between the first and second verses.

Moving on to the chorus, beautiful background vocals are introduced and give the melody a nice lift, and a sense of fullness. The fiddle sneaks back in at the end of the chorus for some more tasty lines and the song then goes through the form again. The song’s bridge provides the listener with a fresh musical event melodically, but also rhythmically, as the guitar ends each phrase with a cool chromatic hook played in staccato 8th notes. The song comes to it's finale with a fiddle solo over a vamp.

The lyrics in “America She’s Crying” were written by Kathy Bell, and are inspired by the sudden changes to life in the United States, after the Presidential election, and due to Covid-19. The verses begin by posing the questions such as “What’s happened to America she used to be so strong” and “can she survive the hard times as she faces many tests?”

The lyrics as a whole, however, are uplifting. Bell's words describe the current situation, reminding listeners that we need to “keep standing tall” and “give it all we’ve got.” Bell maintains a positive spirit that shines through dark times with a sense of heartfelt purpose. Never divisive, her lyrics call for unity and strength.

“America She’s Crying” by Kathy Bell and Bob McGilpin is a well written song, featuring an inspiring performance. The melody is memorable and is written perfectly to deliver the poignant message of the lyrics. The groove is steady as a rock throughout the song, and arrangement nicely frames McGilpin’s strong vocals. This song is much needed in light of our current circumstances.

About Kathy Bell:

Kathy Bell began music at a early age with a dream to perform and sing at the Grand Ole Opry. By age 10, she was playing the piano and singing at the church where her grandfather pastored. In high-school, she played flute in band and sang alto with the choir. Shortly after, she began writing songs, then competed successfully in Karaoke competitions, and today she is a songwriter and has a wholesome comedy act called "Ma Bell."

About Bob McGilpin:

Bob's McGilpin's first release was 1978's "Superstar" on Butterfly records which became a Billboard hit along with "Sexy Thing" and "When You Feel Love." He had multiple major label record deals with Casablanca, RCA, and Butterfly/MCA. McGilpin landed three #1 hits on the coveted Billboard Dance Charts. He is currently working as a Producer, Songwriter, Engineer and Designer/Builder of MVAmps .


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