Home Read Classic Album Review: Rosie Thomas | When We Were Small

Classic Album Review: Rosie Thomas | When We Were Small

The standup comic-turned-singer-songwriter’s debut disc is no laughing matter.

This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Rosie Thomas is apparently a performer with a split personality.

According to her bio, she got her start as a standup comic in Seattle. But there’s nothing funny about When We Were Small, her debut album that shows off her alter-ego: Earnest, confessional folk-pop singer-songwriter. This 10-track album is an intimate and nostalgic memoir, with Thomas relating wistful childhood tales about $2 shoes, wedding days and bicycles. She carefully wraps these memories in gently simple melodies, sparsely homespun guitars, piano-based arrangements and even soundbites taken from old home recordings. Although it’s undeniably melancholic at times, Thomas’s debut has enough honest emotion and earnest craftsmanship to earn her favourable comparison to the likes of Joni, Carly, Carole and Sarah. She can quit her day job anytime.