Welcome to the Beat Cafe

I just had a nice online chat with our friend, George, who has recently relocated to Charleston. I’m suddenly reminded that I neglected to tell you about the CD I received in the mail from him and Noelle last Friday. It was a birthday gift. Do my friends know me, or what? The CD is Donovan’s latest, Beat Cafe...
I’ve loved Donovan’s music since I first heard him in 1965 on my transistor radio. I’ve seen him in concert three or four times and I’ve met him twice and, although my esteem for him has never lessened, I admit I kind of lost a connection with his work after about 1978. I think the last recording I really liked was his Open Road LP (1970). I liked his Lady of the Stars (1984), but it didn’t excite me enough to buy any of his subsequent recordings. Then I moved into classical music.
I’m happy to say, Beat Cafe is wonderful. Donovan has touched his Beat roots in this latest collection of jazz/folk/poetry inspired songs, and he has returned to minimal backup that includes acoustic bass, drums and keyboard. The musical style is what one would expect to hear in a San Francisco cafe in the late 50’s. It’s a blend of styles that results in what I might call "cool mysticism". Personally, I’d give my left arm to find a cafe like this ANYwhere close to where I live. Until then, I have this excellent CD, one I’ll play this winter when friends are over sharing red wine. I’ll light some candles, fire up some incense and enjoy.
Thanks George and Noelle for the great gift, and for remembering my birthday!

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