2008 releases artists to watch for in 2009 digital downloads guitar music

Amiestreet and Brett Dennen – Hope for the Hopeless

Brett Dennen - Hope for the Hopeless

So as I mentioned in a past post, Brett Dennen and Amiestreet have teamed up to make the world a better place with some charity. It’s unfortunate that this happened while I was away on holiday, as by the time you read this post, you will only have a few hours left to get in on the action… as the charity preorder is running until today, the 27th October. I know that’s a confusing way to begin a post, but I thought I should get the important information out of the way first… now, onto more detail.

Brett Dennen was one of the first posts I actually made here on Burgo’s Blog. Having at the time just heard Dennen’s outstanding “Ain’t No Reason” from the “So Much More” album, I was blown away by the potential that this young kid exhibited.
Overall, however, I felt that Dennen’s true possibilities were still undiscovered… while “So Much More” had it’s highlights (particularly the aforementioned “Ain’t No Reason” and “She’s Mine”), the album didn’t quite live up to its highlights. In the end, I was left wanting… more. I knew that Brett Dennen could deliver, but it didn’t seem his time was quite right.

Fast forward to October 2008. I’m on an island in Vanuatu, when an email drops in my inbox from Zane at to let me know that Brett Dennen was releasing his album “Hope for the Hopeless”, and that it would be made available on as part of the website’s ongoing Download To Make A Difference campaign. For each album purchased, will donate $5 to the Mosaic Project, an organization of close personal significance to Brett Dennen.

First off, let me just say that I really like what Amiestreet are doing. They seem to have the right mindset to really make a difference, and I appreciate that.
Secondly, however, another part of me was slightly apprehensive. Would Brett Dennen finally live up to the potential that I was so sure he possessed?

After living with this album for the week that I’ve now been back from the islands, I can say that Dennen’s definitely on the right road. “Hope for the Hopeless” is a far more accomplished album that “So Much More”, and in some ways hearkens back to his self-titled debut.
In particular, songs such as “Closer to You” and “Who Do You Think You Are?” are signals that Dennen is growing exponentially as an artist.
And the unexpected “Make You Crazy”, featuring personal favourite Femi Kuti in an over-too-soon cameo, completely throws you for a loop… in a great way.

Overall, I think there are still depths to Brett Dennen’s capacity as an artist that haven’t been reached; but “Hope for the Hopeless” is a great growth-spurt. I’ll still be watching him with much faith and keen interest.

Check out Amiestreet’s interview with Dennen here, and you can also order the album at the end of the interview.

Here’s some tasters, though, to whet your appetite…

Listen: Brett Dennen – Heaven
Listen: Brett Dennen – Who Do You Think You Are?
Listen: Brett Dennen – Make You Crazy

artists artists to watch for in 2008 music

Brett Dennen – Ain’t No Reason

Brett Dennen

So 2007 is nearly over, and there’s one artist who I feel should have made a bigger splash this year – Brett Dennen.

This kid brought the goods with his 2006 album, “So Much More”, but surprisingly his music is only now beginning to reach a larger audience, thanks to an opening slot for John Mayer.

2008 has to be the year for Dennen. There’s no ways that music such as this should remain only a big deal online. Part Jack Johnson, part Dave Matthews, part Tracy Chapman, part early John Mayer (and, dare we say it, part Dylan if he continues to grow and mature?)… Dennen’s use of jazzy chord structures and a voice that epitomises warmth signals big things that are far too long overdue.

Perhaps the song that best exemplifies Brett Dennen’s song-writing chops is the song, “Ain’t No Reason”. At once a song decrying the way we live:

“prison walls still standing tall
some things never change at all
keep on building prisons,
gonna fill them all.
keep on building bombs
gonna drop them all
working your fingers bare to the bone
breaking your back, make you sell your soul
like a lung is filled with coal, suffocating slow”

… it gives us back hope with the chorus:

“but love will come set me free
love will come set me free
i do believe
love will come set me free
i know it will”

Here’s the song below. Listen. Love. Support.

Brett Dennen – Ain’t No Reason


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