You never know where or when opportunity will find you, or which form it will take — and sometimes, what feels like an end is really a new beginning. That’s just the sort of denim-clad wisdom that makes acoustic guitar-toting troubadours like Craig Bickhardt easy to dismiss out of hand, and yet when he dispenses it in “It Opens,” it’s hard not to come away feeling like you’ve heard something utterly profound and just as lovely.
Credit is due Bickhardt’s beautifully weathered vocals, which perfectly complement the tasteful production — all sunny steel strings, with an unobtrusive bass and gently ambling drums moving things along just so. It’s the kind of song that does its job well without being showy about it, which makes perfect sense; Bickhardt is an old hand, with a long list of songwriting credits for the likes of Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, B. B. King, The Judds, Martina McBride, Kathy Mattea, and others. Hear more of his music, including other cuts from his latest release, The More I Wonder, at Bickhardt’s site.