Pianist and Denver, Colorado native Lisa Downing has spent time touring with new-age artists like Liz Story and Lee Bartley, as well as shared the program with other artists like David Lanz. Her collegiate music degree is a joint one between the University of Colorado at Denver and Metropolitan State College.
A Delicate Balance is her third solo piano recording and has a style very reminiscent of Liz Story. Downing’s 12-track, 42-minute disc is a collection of solo piano pieces inspired by people in her life. For instance, her son Adam inspired the song “Make Believe” and her son Andy inspired the track “Lost.” Downing also features music about specific situations that she faces in her life, as on “No Matter What I Do.”
All of the pieces are mid-tempo, contemplative, with great use of tempo rubato and mostly two-part interplay of lines. The music is all tonal with occasional touchings of “outside” chords. In short, this recording is truly aimed at the new-age market, one which has took a serious beating because as the smooth jazz radio format became more focused, new age music was slowly eliminated from the playlist. For those who like simple, contemplative melodies with simple counterpoint and dynamics that move gently, this disc will speak to you.