Half Notes: Sean Noonan Brewed by Noon – Boxing Dreams (2008)

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I love a good musical crossover. By that I don’t mean when a country star has a pop hit. No, what I’m talking about is a tune that is taken completely out of context by being covered in a different genre. One of my favorite records is called Brand New Second Hand, a collection of pop tunes that have been reggae-fied. The amazing thing is that there are songs that I used to absolutely hate, but ended up loving in reggae form. Remember “On and On”? “Down in Jamaica they got lots of pretty women….”? Stephen Bishop? Super-icky. As a reggae tune (by Aswad)? Awesome. OK, so now that I’ve got that ramble out of the way, let’s talk about Sean Noonan. Oh, he’s a crossover artist alright. But go ahead and give Boxing Dreams a listen and you tell me what this is. Jazz? Rock? Afro-Celtic? A fusion of sorts? For the record, the correct answer is: yes, yes, yes, yes. What this record has in common with the aforementioned reggae covers album is the element of surprise. As you listen, your brain ear bits want to attach the music to a genre … but it never happens. Awesome.

‘Half Notes’ are quick-take thoughts on music from Something Else! Reviews, presented whenever the mood strikes us.

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Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski is a writer and music obsessive based out of the woods of central New Hampshire. A past contributor to Jazz.com, Blogcritics.org and Salon, he originated several of our weekly features including the Friday Morning Listen, (Cross the) Heartland, WTF! Wednesday, and Sparks Fly on E Street. Follow him on Twitter: @msaleski. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Mark Saleski
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