Though older brother Harry was the higher profile sibling prior to his tragic death in a 1981 car crash at the age of 38, Tom Chapin has carved out an impressive career in his own right. An acclaimed folk singer and pioneer in the field of children’s music, the younger Chapin has more than two dozen (mostly excellent) albums to his credit.
In honor of his 70th birthday, the three-time Grammy winner gets back to his folk roots on aptly titled gem “70.” The longtime social activist penned 12 of the 14 tracks on “70” and there are first-rate covers of Steve Goodman’s “City of New Orleans” and Pete Seeger’s “Quite Early Morning.” The latter features Chapin’s daughters Lily and Abigail (aka The Chapin Sisters) and represents one of the record’s highlights.
“I’m at that place in my life where I follow what interests me,” Chapin explains. “I still love the guitar, I still love to sing, and I still love the thrill of creation: a good song, a good recording, a good concert. I feel blessed to be my own boss, creating my own material and performing for so many different audiences and generations.”
Additional keepers on the 48-minute platter include “Down There,” “Guitar Child,” “Old Dogs & Old Friends,” “Prayer for Bristol Bay,” “Put a Light in Your Window” and “The Riverkeeper.” Even after all these years, Tom Chapin remains a relevant voice. (Jeffrey Sisk)