Saturday, October 14, 2017

“Always With You” by Danielle Haskell – A Musical Story of Pain, Faith, and Recovery

When Danielle first told me about the heart-touching history behind the writing of this song, I was hesitant to write a review of it for fear that I would not do it justice.  I am still a bit fearful of that, but after a week of having it tug at my heart, I decided I had to give it my best shot. So, here it is.

I will dispense of the usual discussion about production quality, normally my favorite part of an analysis, because the production is flawless – ready for airplay on any major syndicated network alongside of the greatest artists in country and Christian music.

Sir Elton John once said, “Music has a healing power. It has the ability to take people out of themselves for a few hours.” Danielle’s song “Always With You,” is one of those songs that heals, and that is exactly what she was trying to achieve with the tune, for both herself and her listeners. She needed a song that would remind her of her loss, and that would help inspire others to “chin-up” in the face of adversity.

On her seventeenth birthday, Danielle lost her beloved Grandmother who had been battling cancer. Her Grandma was the devoted family-type, who always attempted to inspire family members to keep a sense of humor, and to accept and be kind to everyone by means of the “Golden Rule.” As chance would have it, a week before the diagnosis of cancer, Danielle was in Quebec City. Knowing that her Grandma was not feeling well, she stopped at a local church to light a candle and say a prayer. Near the church, she found a shop and bought her grandmother a gift – a stone with an angel engraved on one side, and the phrase “Toujours Avec Toi” inscribed on the other – “Always With You.”

Shortly after giving the gift to her grandmother, the diagnosis came. Along with the diagnosis came conversations between the two of them about fears and beliefs, and the phrase “Always With You” took on a new meaning for Danielle, and she knew it would be the title of her next work. She and her producer wrote the song within an hour, and she was able to record it in time for her Grandmother to hear it just before passing.

As proof of her Grandmother’s love of family, Danielle now wears a heart pendant that her Grandma had made for her before passing. On it is a cross and the words “Toujours Avec Toi.” The pendant was made before her Grandmother knew that Danielle was writing “Always With You” in her honor.

Ms. Haskell has the wonderfully unique talent of writing relatable lyrics for the masses.  Whether or not you are a person of faith, the song will inspire you to be strong in the face of adversity, focus on the good and not the bad, and to remember that regardless of who you are, someone out there will always be with you.

“Rain, keeps pouring down. No break in the clouds. No peace for your soul. The days, keep moving so slow. You’re looking for hope. And you feel all alone, but you’re not alone. I am here. I am here!” ~ Danielle Haskell

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