Song of the Day: The Margaret Slovak Trio, “Ballad for Brad”

Guitarist Margaret Slovak defied debilitating injuries to make a sensational comeback. Over the years, she has developed a unique and finely-crafted style of music. Her recently-released new album, Ballad for Brad, highlights her compositional prowess via a program of ten original tracks, and her exceptional musicianship, as she alternates between classical and electric guitars. These compositions are performed with a trio featuring bassist Harvie S and drummer Michael Sarin, both of whom are at the center of New York City’s genre-bending jazz and improvisation community.

Its title track is named after Slovak’s beloved husband, who has had a longtime struggle with cancer. It is a powerful piece of emotional compass, in tribute to his strength and perseverance. Opening as a fugue, the piece undergoes a number of transformations throughout its duration, testifying to the artist’s originality and resourcefulness. Angular and tender, “Ballad for Brad” reflects uncertainty and anxiety in the face of challenge, as well as hopefulness and resilience, underlined by the smooth sound of Slovak’s nylon guitar strings, passionately plucked.

Listen to the track via the player below.

Margaret Slovak’s Ballad for Brad was released earlier this and is available now. Order it here.

Featured photo by Brenda Ladd.

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