REVIEW: John Batdorf “Side II”

REVIEW: John Batdorf “Side II”


John Batdorf has been making music for more than four decades, and here’s his latest release, a 6- song record, Side II.  It was produced and engineered by John Batdorf with associate producer Walt Fogle, and mastered by Kevin Bartley. The album cover was designed by Jessica Agg, with the front cover sketch by Jason Quinn and the back cover picture treatment of John and Melanie by Frank Verni.

Musicians on the album are Batdorf on acoustic guitars/Lead Vocals/Harmonies/Keys/Bass and Percussion; Michael Dowdle on electric guitars; Dave Pearlman on pedal steel; Lenny Frisch on steel drum; and additional vocals by Matt Batdorf on “Dark Wind Blowin’.”

All songs are original tunes by John Batdorf and Michael McLean.

“I Saved My Finest Love Song Til Now” will pull you into late ’70s folk rock production style, with a nod to Beatles-esque harmonies to lift your heart.   There’s something about Batdorf’s vocal tones that will carry you back on winds of earlier days.

“Dark Wind Blowin’ is a darker song full of foreboding, combined with high vocals harmonizing in a style reminiscent of the Eagles.   “If I Could Make the Whole World See” carries you back up to a plateau of hope, lead by acoustic guitar and Batdorf’s flinty voice.

“Why’s My Heart Broken.”  Good question. The song puts modern negativity with technology and social media in the limelight.  Why do we only receive the worst news?  What’s going on, so much darkness, so little dawn. “Are We Ever Going to Be All Right” continues the same query as the song before, in a stronger request to make it through, and a brighter arrangement.

“Daddy Doesn’t Love You” hosts a little bit of country flavor, with the opening line “AirBnB in Hawaii” you’ll be drawn in immediately, and off to a tale of a Hawaiian wedding with a hard hitting twist of abandonment.

You may be wondering how John Batdorf’s name rings a bell.  He has written some big hits, including “Somewhere in the Night” (as duo Batdorf & Rodney) and “Wham Bam” with the group Silver.

Find John Batdorf’s music here:

Side II

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