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Friday, September 29, 2023


Crow beats cancer and heartache in ‘Detours’

Sheryl Crow’s new album Detours, released February 5, is very personal and political, with songs touching on everything from current world affairs to her breakup with fianc’eacute; Lance Armstrong.

The album opens with the acoustic "God Bless This Mess," which references 9/11 and the war in Iraq. While some listeners may not enjoy the political messages, everyone can enjoy how Crow delivers them. Detours is far from a mess; the lyrics reflect the current mood and dissatisfaction felt by Americans.

For example, "Motivation" comments on the lack of motivation and the shallow pop-culture obsession of today’s youth. It calls for social change and attentiveness to the world’s problems. In a January interview with Billboard Magazine, Crow said she wanted this album to be a "wake up call" for listeners. It’s just so easy to "turn it all off," she said.

"Love is Free" sounds like a summer tune, but it is actually a response to Hurricane Katrina and an acknowledgement of the ensuing hardships facing the people of New Orleans.

On a personal note, Crow reflects on her battle with breast cancer and public breakup with Lance Armstrong. These songs are the best on the album because of the sensitive and emotional nature of the lyrics. The song "Love is All There Is" expresses the loneliness and self-doubt one feels after a breakup. And in "Now That You’re Gone," Crow sings of the freedom and pain associated with the end of a relationship.

"Now that you’re gone I can breathe/now that you’re gone I am free," she sings.

At times her songs seem almost too happy to be dealing with such serious issues, but by placing her sincere lyrics with light-hearted music, Sheryl Crow effectively wakes us up to the messages within her songs.

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