‘Dreams of Velvet’ and ‘Let You Go’ by songwriter, pianist and guitarist, Sandra Esparza, exemplifies what good song writing and performance all about – sincerity, emotional honesty, command of language, solid melodies, and singing that stand on their own without pretense. There’s not a track in Esparza’s catalog that won’t leave you feeling something. These are songs of familial love, romantic relationships, and expressions of life’s other emotional experiences. Sure, that may sound sappy. How could they not be considering the subject matter? What elevates her material above the sugary drivel can be found in her use of particular details to reveal layers of emotion, and her sweet, yet earthy voice.
As usual Sandra Esparza’s material is raw and organic, whittled down to either a guitar or piano, and voice. So theoretically these tracks could be built and expanded into whatever genre the final polished instrumental arrangement will allow for.
Currently they’re pure singer-songwriter songs with an indie-pop twist. As can be heard on ‘Dreams of Velvet’, Esparza’s presence goes beyond just singing her tunes. She inhabits them like an old T-shirt. The arrangements are deceptively simple and allow Sandra Esparza lots of open space to express herself.
She understands the sophisticated musical rhetoric of appearing effortless, on ‘Dreams of Velvet’ she tosses off the lyrics as if she’s just singing to a friend. She impresses by not trying to impress. Here she sings about her aspirations –seen through her eyes, and the eyes of those close to her heart. The song is based off a phrase that states: “Expect nothing and life will be velvet.”
As she sings through sentimental details on ‘Let You Go’, it all comes off as sincere. Only someone who has lived those details could deliver them in that way. Such is the song’s gossamery authenticity, even if this particular soliloquy doesn’t match yours, you’ll feel it.
Sandra Esparza has different truths to tell, depending on which side of her you’re witnessing. And every side of every truth is resplendently rendered throughout her songs. ‘Let You Go’ is no exception to the rule. And depending on who you are, and where you are in life, this song could get you choked up.
It’s not that Sandra Esparza is forcefully trying to put a lump in your throat. The singer-songwriter is just singing the truth as she knows it. Like most of her work, she finds profundity in the ordinary moments of everyday life. Esparza’s attention to detail, and the way she makes universal sentiments suddenly, and piercingly, specific, are why her songs are special.
Sandra Esparza seems more interested in being honest than hip. Her voice is warm and sincere, and her understated acoustic musical arrangements never overshadow her lyrics, in which she almost always manages to say the right thing.
As usual, you can check out Sandra Esparza jamming and singing on her YOUTUBE channel. Be sure to LIKE and COMMENT.