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Songs We Love: Peter Eldridge, 'Mind To Fly'

Peter Eldridge.
Courtesy of the artist
Peter Eldridge.

It's summer. We're still in the thick of the Rio Olympics. So it's a perfect time for Peter Eldridge's hypnotic "Mind To Fly." Shaded with the sounds of Brazil, it's also deeply colored by rich harmonic textures, intricate rhythmic ideas and wistful lyrics about the end of a romance.

Over more than 25 years, Eldridge has built a solid career as a singer, songwriter, pianist and teacher. All of those talents are in ample evidence in this original tune, on which he sings and plays piano and which opens his recently released album, Disappearing Day. He frames himself with smart and alluring accompaniment, including a sinuous bass line, smoky background vocals and bright percussion and triangle.

The real star attraction here is Eldridge's own voice. As a singer, Eldridge possesses an incredible instrument; I've admired the quality of his voice since the early days of the vocal quartet he co-founded, New York Voices. Here, he offers a master class in shading each vowel just so, and yet it sounds completely effortless. "Mind to Fly" hits a sweet spot — and goes down just as easily as a caipirinha.

Disappearing Day is out now on Sunnyside.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Anastasia Tsioulcas is a reporter on NPR's Arts desk. She is intensely interested in the arts at the intersection of culture, politics, economics and identity, and primarily reports on music. Recently, she has extensively covered gender issues and #MeToo in the music industry, including backstage tumult and alleged secret deals in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against megastar singer Plácido Domingo; gender inequity issues at the Grammy Awards and the myriad accusations of sexual misconduct against singer R. Kelly.