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There are plenty of musicians and artists who have an uplifting, empowering, or positive message that can temporarily bolster the listener’s spirits or improve one’s mood or outlook. There are fewer artists who actively strive to make a personal, tangible difference in someone’s life through a musical relationship. When I saw the part documentary, part music video for Idalee’s song, “Heal,” I knew he was among the second type of artist I described.
Both the content and production style of the piece moved and inspired me. Idalee’s mellow, slightly raspy, lovable voice matched perfectly with the compassionate, empathetic lyrics of the song and the vulnerable, open interviews of the inmates Idalee worked with to perform his song. His video was a powerful demonstration of both art and compassion’s ability to heal broken people, to create beauty and goodness out of a rather bleak situation. The inmates, some of whom were serving time for heinous crimes, were presented earnestly as complicated, vulnerable human beings who despite their shortcomings, were able to contribute to a beautiful musical production and, through that process, feel some personal healing.
The video ended on a hopeful note, with many of the prisoners stating the dates of their release. As a whole, the heartwarming effects of Idalee’s smooth, upbeat music, catchy chorus and honest lyrics were bolstered further by the story of his relationship with the inmates. This song reminded me that, no matter how hard we fall, there is always opportunity to heal through art and through human compassion.

Review written by MuzicNotez writer Michael LaBella
Follow him on Twitter @mlabellamusic or on www.MichaelLaBelleaMusic.com

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