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                               since 1998.

Frank Critelli
Digital Downloads

Both/And is no longer available on CD.

Singer/Songwriter         HOME TOWNNew Haven/Meriden, CT

Visit Frank Critelli's Web Site & MySpace Page               Frank Critelli

Check out Frank's New LIMITED EDITION CD: A Rat's Dose
Also by Frank: Waltzing Through Quicksand, Before You Break,
even more CDs by: Frank Critelli

plus, Check out Frank's side project: Brutally Frank

Individual Song Downloads
Issue #44                                Dec ‘02

Frank Critelli is a singer
Frank Critelli is a songwriter
Frank Critelli is a teacher
Frank Critelli is a poet
And Frank Critelli has a problem…

He wants to be a better person so that he can help to make the world a better place.

Both/And is Frank’s 4th CD, the 1st released on the Meriden, CT based ThinManMusic label, and it brings to the forefront Frank’s range of musical stylings. Kudos to sound engineer Roger Arnold, who has found a way to allow the instrumentation to jump out at us. The sound brings forth Frank’s coffee house intimacy to its fullest virtue, creating an astoundingly beautiful soundscape for the ears; whether it is Frank’s versatile vocals, acoustic strumming, intricate picking, or full-blown band accompaniment. It’s a musical element that brings to mind early James Taylor (consider that a high compliment – and for those who may scoff, we point only to “Sweet Baby James” and tell you that the artistic merit of the songs, arrangements, melodies, vocal deliveries, and lyrics show such parallels that if you put Both/And, and Sweet Baby James in your CD player and hit random, you will have a musical gem of an afternoon).

The CD lays solid evidence of the singer/songwriter evolving and growing over time into a songwriter capable of full band orchestrations (This Day, I Was Only Sleeping, She Drinks From Me, Bohemian – each displaying a variation of genres that shows Frank to be a disciple of many of the songwriting icons we all know and worship). What gives this disc its soul is Frank as the poet/prophet, not unlike Dylan, delivering deep, heartfelt lyrics, which are rooted in the goodness of humanity, that ultimately give the moral that we as individuals apply to match our current need.

And nothing exemplifies this more than “If I Were Me” and “Dear Puppeteer” – The heart, the soul, the pure essence of not only this disc, but of Frank Critelli himself. Here the artist strips himself bare, exposing his innermost being to a point where we are allowed to reflect upon life through his values, and find that the pearl of humanity that he wishes to harvest and bestow upon the world, is still being ground by the sands of imperfection that we are always trying to wash away.

If I Were Me relates a tale of a man reflecting on the past. He wishes the better/wiser man (of now) were to have been the same one from the beginning and how his regret does show him that in growing older, he has grown – still he laments that he wasn’t a better man in earlier life;

If I were me
I do things differently
I’d act appropriately
If I were me.

But, if he had succeeded in being the person he is now, earlier in life, he wouldn’t be the person he is today:

The fact is plain to see
I wouldn’t be the same
If I were me.

And, he could not have made this disc without everything in his life that he has endured – which in turn has fashioned a wonderful testament to the fact that even though life is hard and holds it’s own unique hurdles for each of us, if taken into context and applied correctly we can learn to allow it to shape and form us into better people, much in the same way a teacher tries to shape and form us. Life is our teacher, and hopefully we can in turn teach this to others, who will in turn do the same, and ultimately it could lead to making the world a better place.

Frank Critelli has stated that he wrote Dear Puppeteer after seeing Being John Malkovich, he has also said that it is about God. Yet one only has to look back to If I Were Me to see that this song is once again Frank opening his soul and showing us how he is trying to come to terms with his life, how it has gone, where it is going, and how it might end up. Though he still has trouble coming to terms with who he was, the realization is that he has traversed a long way, but the trek is still ongoing to become the man he wants to be.

So is the journey of life - It brings you to places you sometimes know but fail to recognize for what they are – thus the need of the education of life; to understand why we did what we did, and how, if ever, we are to arrive at where we want to be – this ageless torment of man is evident in all of us, yet it is the ones who can display their burden as a guidance for others who are the true teachers. But at what price? For some the problems that arise when questioning the course of life are too much to carry forth, thus hindering the effectiveness of their efforts. For others it acts not only a magnifier, but as a self-healer.

This is what Frank Critelli is all about. He has taken these life lessons and placed them to verse and music so that he may share his life learning experiences with us, in an effort to not only help him understand and accept their value in the role of his lifetime, but for us to recognize and understand their worth in the course of mankind.

Frank Critelli doesn’t have to worry about being a better person to help make the world a better place; the world is already a better place because of Frank Critelli.

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