“Starting Over,” Ernie Halter’s latest album, is the perfect mix of pop, blues and soul. Even as I type this, I can’t sit still in my chair. While listening to it, one thing comes to mind. Roadtrip. No, this is not as random as it sounds, and I’m pretty sure it isn’t some subliminal message set off by the vehicle in the cover art. Ernie Halter’s music makes me want to take a roadtrip. Why? Because then I would be able to listen to his music, belt out the lyrics and not have to worry about anyone judging me.
The car is one of the most common places for people to listen to music. For me, it is also one of my favorite musical venues. When I become attached to a CD, all I want to do is drive around and listen to it. All other commitments and previous engagements become irrelevant. My house loses its position as my final destination. Instead, my final destination becomes the last note of the final song. Basically, if you’re in the car with me while I’m listening to “Starting Over,” prepare to arrive wherever we need to go approximately 37 minutes and 22 seconds after I popped in the CD.
I only have one complaint about the CD. The best songs are the ones that Halter wrote himself, or collaborated upon with another musician, and those that meld with his overall style. They are within his element and fit the groove of his voice seamlessly. It is clear that he is comfortable performing that genre of music. While Cyclone isn’t bad, persay, I do kind of question why he chose to include a pop sounding version of the R&B song about a girl that moves her body like a cyclone and makes some guy want to do it all night long, on his CD. Clearly, I don’t know Ernie Halter personally, but from his tone of voice, it sounds like he is whining about having to sing the song. I love love love when he sticks to his element, and would’ve rather heard more of that. Ah, as it turns out, my “complaint” turned into a backhanded compliment.
My three favorite songs on the CD are My Heart is with You (which was recently considered for a Grammy for best pop vocal), Played, and Lighthouse. Hands down. Halter had a role in writing each and every one of them, which makes me love them even more. Each of the three tells a story and makes me wonder who the girl is that he’s singing about. Maybe he’s just a convincing musician, but I have a feeling that she actually exists. Below are videos of each of the songs. If you enjoy them, head to iTunes or a local music store and buy his cd!
UPDATE: I just found out that this CD was recorded without any vocal editing or pitch correcting. That is amazing. Thanks so much, Ernie, for putting your true self out there in a world full of computerized musicians! It turned out great!
My Heart is with You: