Review by Sylvie Marie & HerSong
The W.A M. Awards celebrate the year’s most outstanding independent artists from around the world in multiple genres and categories. "Best Song" and "Best Album" nominations were based on Artistry, Musicianship, Originality, Professionalism, Diversity, and Excellence. W.A.M. stands for "We Are the Music Makers.' Happy Curmudgeons' song "2nd Chances" Feat. Amy Lavery was the 2020 W.A.M. Award Winner for Best Song in the Roots / Americana / Bluegrass / Blues music category.
A crisp guitar lick opens "2nd Chances" performed by The Happy Curmudgeons featuring vocalist Amy Lavery. The acoustic rhythm guitar carries the song with an 8-to-the- bar sway giving the song a relaxed, yet steady groove. After 4 bars, a warm violin line seeps in like honey over the bright acoustic guitar. The contrast is beautiful. Percussion that emphasizing the snare and a light bass line complete the band's intro while setting up the mellow vibe for Amy's entrance on the first verse:
"Well, I don't know where I'm going, but I know just where I've been. I can promise you one thing, I'm not going back again."
Amy sings with tenderness and a confidence that grows, matching the song's expressive journey. The path is lonely, but change is coming. "Driving down this lonely highway, listening to the radio. Lord, I've got to change my direction - no particular place to go." This is a song about letting time heal your wounds and looking forward to what tomorrow may bring- it's about having faith in 2nd chances.
Halfway in, listeners are treated to solos that highlight the exceptional musicianship this band offers. A smooth and silky organ melts over the track bringing in a sweet 60's vibe as an electric guitar solo fits tight melodic phrasing into the pocket. Vocal harmonies enhance the song's catchy melody. Every inch of this song has been attended to from the superior songwriting to the arranging and production work.
"2nd Chance" captures complex emotions in a way that only music can. There's hope and faith in looking forward to an unwritten story, and there's a deep self-awareness looking back at what went wrong in the past and feeling okay and ready to move on. Amy's warm and assuring vocals, the band's tasteful musicianship, and poetic lyrics all come together to create a sense of renewal. "I'm shooting for the stars now, in search of beautiful things. If I could fly to Saturn, I would float between the rings." A 2020 W.A.M. Award Winner, "2nd Chances" is a timeless song and great way to bring on 2021!
About Happy Curmudgeons
The Happy Curmudgeons are a group of studio musician mainly from the metro Detroit area. Dave Hamilton started the band in 2015 and they released their first album, Meant 2 Be, in 2017.
2020 W.A.M. Award Winners, the band is currently working on their second album with producer, Mark Byerly (Bob Seger Band).
For more information on the Happy Curmudgeons, please visit their website.
Stream on Spotify.