Review by Abby Kenna
“Dust In the Wind” by Marsha Bartenetti is an ethereal interpretation of Kansas’s classic acoustic hit.
Bartenetti’s arrangement opens with the faraway toll of church bells, echoing somewhere in the distance of this dreamy soundscape. A cinematic scene comes into focus as a minor melody is plucked on an acoustic guitar with tense swells of strings blossoming beneath. Elegant drums filter in, soft and jazzy in their graceful light cymbal brushes. The orchestral arrangement continues to grow as glimmers of woodwinds flicker in the peripheral, shrouded by ambient background vocals. All the while, the church bells chime ominously in the background, adding to the abstract, contemplative feel of the track. Marsha Bartenetti utilizes this prismatic palette of instruments and textures cleverly, layering the moving parts delicately to create a kaleidoscopic, captivating introduction.
The composition builds as though it was developed from a stream-of-consciousness thought, growing and twisting with a life of its own, but Bartenetti’s voice grounds the whimsical track. It has a wealth of depth within each rich note, especially standing out when highlighted by a choir of hushed background vocals.
“Now, don't hang on
Nothin' lasts forever but the earth and sky
It slips away…”
Although both the original version of “Dust in the Wind” and Marsha Bartenetti’s are similar in their core harmonic and lyrical content, they almost feel like two completely different songs - in the best possible way. Bartenetti embraces the introspection within Kansas’s lyrics, letting the isolation and reflection from the Covid-19 pandemic fuel her abstract arrangement. She wanders through an orchestra of sounds within this cover, letting her inspiration come to fruition in the form of fluttering woodwinds and sighing strings. Her musical eloquence makes it clear that Bartenetti has felt life’s fragility firsthand, and that experience has infused her version of “Dust in the Wind” with a vivid personality distinct from the original.
Marsha Bartenetti’s adaptation of Kansas’s “Dust in the Wind” is breathtaking. Fueled by the relevant poignancy of the Covid-19 pandemic and flourishing with instrumental beauty, this cover is a necessary re-evaluation of life’s fleeting nature.
About Marsha Bartenetti
Marsha is a smooth, rich, expressive singer with the ability to bring authenticity to each song with heartfelt vocals that transport a lyric straight to your heart. She has been known to “cross any genre for a good lyric” and does so with heart and truth.
Her performances throughout the southland at venues like Catalina’s, and SRO shows at Upstairs at Vitello’s, and Herb Alpert’s Vibrato have won her audiences over – Marsha started her career in the San Francisco Bay Area in the late 60’s The music scene was alive with incredible talent and opportunities. Her band opened for such acts at The Youngbloods, and played at venues like the Troubadour in Los Angeles.
She also brings to the table years of successful voice-over work with National credits, and currently narrates Audio Description for Feature films and Television. For the last 6 years Marsha has been recording and releasing CD’s for DiskEyes Productions and has been highly regarded and reviewed.
Her material is available on all platforms. – Amazon, iTunes, Spotify, YouTube – Her most recent releases are reimagined singles by Jefferson Airplane and Kansas and she is currently in the studio working on her next project.
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