When Love is Real (with Kent Gustavson)

This record comes from the heart of lullabies and Christmas/holiday sing-alongs. Cynthia Gustavson carried her Koa-wood Harmony guitar with her through 20 moves and dozens of cities, around the world, anchoring her children in the music that magically emerged from its dull, soft strings grown green with age…

When Kent Gustavson became a professional musician, receiving a PhD in classical music, and putting out popular and folk music albums of his own, his mother and father supported him wholeheartedly, knowing that, at the core of his music, there was the integrity they had planted and watch grow within him over a quarter century.

This album, When Love is Real, is the result of a return to family roots, and a love between spouses, between children parents… There are songs here about politics. There are songs about religion… But, most importantly, there are songs about love.

Kent Gustavson and his father, Edward, were in a terrible car accident in 2001, 6 months exactly before 9/11, and went through a very lengthy and painful process of recovery. In the early stages of that, after a conversation with Kent about the differences between poetry and music lyrics, Cynthia wrote the extraordinary song ‘When Love is Real,’ a romantic ballad that truly expresses the pain of love, loss and the deep, ingrown, love that only the long-married know about. After 37 years, Cynthia and her husband are still in love. Not like children — but a deep, different love…

“It’s the touch of his hand on my cheek that I feel. / And I know when I lie awake, my every care he’ll take.”

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