Review by Matt Watts & Staff
"Love Surrounds" by Sara Rodenburg opens with a warm, twangy, and melancholic melody on the steel guitar, accompanied by the strumming of an acoustic guitar that creates a soulful groove. A sparkling "droning" in the background fills the space and adds a pleasant ambiance to the mix. Sara enters singing, "Love. love surrounds me. Too many places I'm fallin' apart." Sara's vocals are soft and endearing as she leads us into the first verse. The arrangement gradually picks up. The chorus, which is highly memorable, enters with plucky banjo arpeggiations appearing opposite the lead and some light percussion. Lyrically, the song invites us to "just take up the wind" and head on down to Tennessee, a place that feels like home. There's a sweet and soulful vibe that depicts the need to just let go of life's troubles. Whether it's with a stranger who becomes a friend, or someone who sees the best in you when you are going through hard times, "Love Surrounds" holds your hand and sings to you a song of self-assurance. As the song continuous, there is an openness to experience change and keep moving forward.
The song fully adopts a mid-western country feel with the later additions of drums followed by a washy, distorted electric guitar solo. The guitar sings gently in the instrumental section, washing over you like the Tennessee sun. Everything about the production and performance of "Love Surrounds" is warm, tender, and inviting. There's a tinge of longing and loneliness, but the song is never bitter. Both lyrically and musically, "Love Surrounds" is heartfelt and healing.
Sara is an American Singer-Songwriter originally from Chicago, based in the Bay Area. Her original acoustic folk-rock tunes and soulful, transcendent vocals are born out of the south side of Chicago, and are textured with inspiration, grit, and warm California Sun. Melodic phrasings of love, journey, transformation, and joyful spirit are at the heart of Sara’s songs.
A Chicago native, Sara has been living in the Bay Area since 2010 after having lived a lot of life, played a lot of shows, and written many songs in Southern California's Long Beach.
Currently Sara can be seen in many Bay Area Venues from the North Bay favorites like Silo's and City Winery in Napa, Benicia's First Street Cafe, Fenix in San Rafael to San Francisco's Hotel Utah, Bazaar Cafe, Thee Parkside, Plough and Stars. Sara's most recent album, "Letters and Notes", and previous EP “Songs for Under Skies” is available on Spotify, Amazon, Apple music, CD Baby, and iTunes.
For more information on Sara, please visit her website!