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Beth Donnelly and Doug Feller: My Heart is For You

A Devon Cathlin Review
My Heart is For You
Review by: Devon Cathlin

Beth Donnelly and Doug Feller. Having those two names in your memory is all you need to embrace the most beautiful love songs of all time, revel in two of the most amazing voices in the universe, and fall in love again and again with the classics. Donnelly and Feller are fabulous. "Il mio cuor' ? per te." Yes, indeed, Beth and Doug, my heart is for you.

Being fortunate enough to live near the Portland, Oregon metro area, I get to listen to a huge variety of musical genres. When people think of Portland, they imagine the 1960s garage rock scene or see the city as home to 1980s hardcore punk. Yes, Portland lays claim to Louie, Louie by The Kingsmen, and we embrace that "fame" with glee and, sometimes, even gloating. Yet, no matter how titillating those eras were, the Rose City has always had a diverse and vital musical persona covering every genre known. From blues to bluegrass to opera ... wait, did I say OPERA? Yes. A thousand times YES!

Music is part and parcel of the Rose City. Rose City. That's what Portland is called and it's a nickname worthy of things that are infused with elegance and power. It's a name to invoke stages resplendent with lofty sopranos and the rich timbre of baritones. Here is the natural beauty of skyscraper-tall fir trees, rivers winding to the ocean, and skies that reach down to touch ferns and rhododendrons that stay green all year long.

One of the greatest gifts Portland offers is the duo of Beth Donnelly and Doug Feller. Portland caresses the eyes. Donnelly and Feller caress the ears. Nothing could be more appropriate than finding these two singers right in the midst of this most incredibly diverse and delightful city. They are our very own opera delights and have produced a new CD for those not fortunate enough to live among the roses.

My Heart is For You has twelve tracks, plus a bonus, for a total of thirteen ways to enjoy astonishing singing ranging from Verdi to Puccini. Each song stands alone as a vibrant individual, but I have been challenged to choose a few to cover in this review. I can't do it. Therefore, I have pulled a rabbit from the hat, or, as is the case here, an old Irish tune, an original of la familia Feller/Donnelly, and an old favorite of my own by Dvo??k. I really couldn't have chosen from the variety on this CD. They are all too wonderful, too effervescent, for me to choose which not to write about. For that reason, randomly pulled from a hat, I give you these. Do enjoy My Heart is For You. It's tangibly fabulous!

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My Heart is For You - Beth Donnelly, Doug Feller and Jeremiah Feller penned this journey through the enchantment of loving. Sung by both Donnelly and Feller, it shares lyrics in both the romance of the Italian tongue and the language we in the USA share, English. The words, "She has my heart," reflects the depth of the message. Ah, such a worthy message. "You're the breath that I take." Their voices rise and fall on emotion. As they sing, "When I stand in the moonlight, I think of you," I know that anyone who has the marvelous fortune of hearing them will always and forever know that feeling as fundamentally as the breath of life.

Song to the Moon - Antonin Dvo??k's opera Rusalka, from which this song comes, is the story of a sprite. These mythological creatures live in lakes or rivers. What could be more appropriate for the city that is ever green, where rivers and lakes abound, where people never look to the sky for rain because they know it is coming? Song to the Moon is from Act I of the opera and, while you may not understand every word if you speak mainly English, you can't miss the stunning beauty of the lady Donnelly. Often heard on movie and television soundtracks, this is a favorite of mine. Yet, I am impassioned by the way Beth brought it to life. It reverberates with the story and took me on a silvery ride across rippling water with Rusalka the water nymph. Donnelly is stunning. Unequivocally stunning.

O Danny Boy - Is there a single person on planet Earth who doesn't find this old Irish tune both uplifting and heart-rending? I get teary-eyed when I hear bagpipes play O Danny Boy. Moreover, I openly wept when Doug reached in his vast arsenal of talent to reprise the tale of a loved one leaving. Never have I heard this song so beautifully performed ... and I have heard the best in the world sing it. The emotion in Feller's voice is sublime. Indeed, I find tears in my eyes at this very moment as I tell you how I felt listening to Frederic Weatherly's tribute to dear Danny. "And I shall sleep in peace until you come to me." And I shall hold Feller's O Danny Boy dear to my heart for forever and a day.

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My soul soars with hummingbirds when I listen to Beth Donnelly and Doug Feller. It's a truth that researchers recorded one hummingbird who flew from Florida to Alaska. Imagine the smallest bird in the world; they weigh less than eight pennies. Now imagine iridescent feathers spread against the wind and propelling forward at thirty miles per hour on a journey of 3,500 miles. This, yes, this is what happens when I hear Donnelly's soprano and Feller's baritone. A hummingbird's heart beats up to 1,260 times per minute. My heart, set free by My Heart is For You, moves with equally astonishing grace and speed.

Beth Donnelly and Doug Feller: My Heart is For You

01)??My Heart is For You Beth Donnelly, Doug Feller, Jeremiah Feller 4:05
02)??A Vucchella Francesco Paolo Tosti, Gabrielle D'Annunzio 3:23
03)??Libiamo from La Traviata Giuseppe Verdi 3:03
04)??O Mio Babbino Caro (from Gianni Schicchi) Giacomo Puccini 2:14
05)??Maria Mari E. Di Capua, A. Mazzucchi, V. Russo 3:11
06)??Mattinata Ruggiero Leoncavallo 1:55
07)??Santa Lucia Traditional, A. Longo 2:52
08)??Song to the Moon (from Rusalka) Antonin Dvo??k 5:10
09)??O Du Mein Holder Abendstern (from Tannhauser) Richard Wagner 3:48
10)??Ouvre Ton Coeur Georges Bizet 2:24
11)??Plaisir D' Amour Jean-Paul-Egide Martini, Jean-Pierre Claris de Florian 3:19
12)??O Danny Boy Irish Tune Londonderry Air, Frederic Weatherly 3:08
13)??The Dream Brian Rose, Beth Donnelly, Doug Feller 3:00

Richard Bower (piano)
John Mery (guitar) (mandolin)
Kevin Deitz (bass)
Mike Snyder (drums)
Gordon Rencher (tambourine) (castanets)

Arrangements by Jon Newton, Derek Sims
Recorded and mixed by Brian Rose
Orchestration by Brian Rose & Jon Newton

Synopses written by Michael Berkson

Photography by David Papazian
Booklet design by Stacy Chase
Mastering by Dana White

Produced by Jeremiah Productions
2014 Jeremiah Productions, LLC.
All rights reserved
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Beth Donnelly and Doug Feller

Review by: Devon Cathlin

? Devon Cathlin 2014
All Rights Reserved

Copyright ? All Rights Reserved

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