Beth Hart has been down a long road...from the top of the charts to the lowest place you can be in life. And that journey has been reflected in every album she's released.
She leads you by the hand through her experiences, re-living every joy and weeping over every sorrow. You see it in her lyrics, you hear it in her music, and you feel it in every sweet sigh and every savage scream that's on every track she's ever made. Her edgy, no-non-sense approach to her art is what has made her truly one-of-a-kind.
As it happens to all true survivors, ultimately, life revealed itself to Beth and now she's arrived at the place she's always dreamed of: a place of love, spirituality and, most of all, contentment.
It wasn't always that way.
Her first album "Immortal", was full of the pomposity of rock cut with the agony of blues. From the time it was released, it had more going for it than most new artists can ever hope for. Three of music's superstar producers teamed up to make this album , each of them mesmerized by her raw, powerful voice. With the wealth of experience and credits that Hugh Padgham, David Foster and Mike Clink brought to the project, how could it fail to be anything other than USA multi-platinum? But Beth knew there was something missing. "We were too cocky and I didn't really know what I wanted. As good as the talent on the album was, it never captured the simple truth of our live performances."
Her 2nd album, "Screamin' For My Supper" put her back in the right direction. With techno-wizard producer Tal Herzberg producing this album with Beth, this album contained her huge hit, "L.A. Song" as well as "Delicious Surprise", which were both produced by Oliver Leiber. But, again, there was a critical ingredient missing, and, unfortunately for Beth, this time it was her health. "I was drinking and partying so much; I slowly started to go out of my mind," Beth recalls. "As good as an experience as it was working with Tal, and as many doors as 'L.A. Song' opened up for us, I wasn't together enough to enjoy the ride."
Her 3rd album, "Leave The Light On", also featured a wealth of talent. Producers Mike Bradford, Danny Saber as well as Oliver Leiber and E.T. Thorngren all had a hand in helping Beth craft this work. Beth had dropped out of sight for a while and this album helped her heal as she climbed out of that dark place. This album, more than any previous one, was intensely personal for Beth. "I was going back into a career that I had lost my mind pursuing. Now I felt a tremendous responsibility to be totally honest, because so many young girls had looked up to me throughout my career. I owed it to them to reveal the truth about what I had gone through and warn them about where that can take you."
After that experience, Beth was ready to "go live" again. A series of tours followed in Europe, primarily in Denmark and Holland . Beth is very grateful for having had that experience. "Those audiences brought my confidence back. They reminded me of the power of my music, of how it could reach out into the crowd and touch everyone in one way or another. I really loved those people, man, and I could feel their love coming back to me."
If there are two words that personify her new album, "37 Days", they are "love" and "live." And, given all that Beth has been through, is it any surprise?
No other recording in her entire career does a better job of capturing Beth Hart's music live than "37 Days." The entire album was recorded and mixed in only 37 days. It was produced like a live album. All the people who worked on the album respected, trusted and loved each other: Jon Nichols on Guitar, Tom Lilly on Bass, Todd Wolf on Drums and Percussion, the talented Danish Producer, Rune Westberg (As Beth says of Rune, "He's helped me be a better artist all around...I love this guy!"), Beth's friend and Manager, David Wolff, her husband, Scott Guetzkow, and all those talented people at Center Staging. There was a spontaneous chemistry on this record that only happens on stage.
And no other song on the album better captures that spirit than the first single, "Good As It Gets." This song is all about going for it...all of it. And whether you get there or not, what really matters is that you tried.
As Beth says, "this song is about knowing that I'm all right inside. Things are the way they are for a reason." In many ways that reason is her family. Her husband, Scott, is Beth's greatest "confidence-builder," kind and gentle but a rock of stability.
This song will inspire everyone who's ever chased a dream, because it puts as much importance on the journey as it does the destination.
The other songs on the album also reflect Beth's unique points of view:
"Sick" is Beth's political statement about the George Bush administration. Enough said.
"Face Forward" is her solution to the Bush administration. Beth describes what went through her head when she wrote it, "its my vision of putting George Bush through boot camp and beating the shit out of him."
"Jealousy" is about being willing to talk about your defects. Beth notes, "if you listen to this song over and over, you'll know exactly what NOT to do."
"At The Bottom" shows you where Beth goes when she's in a bad place.
"Crashing Down" is about blues legend Robert Johnson. As the story goes, he went down to the crossroads and sold his soul to the Devil. The character in this piece is a woman who's being chased by the Devil but is unwilling to sell her soul.
"Easy" is about a woman trying to kill herself. Beth is saddened by "how easy sometimes it would be to do it ( so )."
"Missing You" is Beth's statement about the children of war, about "saying goodbye to your innocence."
"Forever Young" involves two kids who have made the commitment to keep chasing what they love. And, just like Beth these days, "it's what makes you feel young, alive."
When Beth came up with the idea for "Heaven Look Down", she was watching TV and shaking her head sadly about what was going on in the world. She says ; "I looked up at the sky and wondered if Heaven has turned its back on us."
"One-Eyed Chicken" is about struggling with change. Or, as Beth describes it, "What do you do when you've got an angel on one shoulder and the Devil on the other?"
"Over You" is much more than a relationship song. For Beth it reflects, "My relationship with my music and how it runs me through a whole rollercoaster of emotions."
"Soul Shine" was written by Warren Haynes and Beth says its message, "positively humbles me."
Finally, when asked about "Waterfalls", Beth breaks into that big laugh of hers. "I have no fucking idea what that song's about!"
"37 Days" is the kind of record that only comes out once in a great while...it totally captures the energy of a live performance without sacrificing the production values of a studio album.
But, more importantly, audiences will be drawn to its messages of inspiration and of life. It captures every emotion through hard-driving rock and roll, soulful blues accents, power ballads and sweeping anthems.
It goes to the very soul of a great artist, who's finally found herself in her music, and doesn't regret one day of the pain and passion she had to experience to get there.
To Beth this has been her greatest accomplishment. "All my life I was envious of what other people had. Now I realize I have it all....I feel peace for the first time in my life."
What does the future hold for Beth? She plans to perform and perform and perform and perform...now that she knows that "life has really gotten good and it can only get better and better."