One of Neil Diamond’s vintage cuts, Glory Road is both the title track and the lead single off David Sherry’s latest album. A closer look at the track-listing will reveal the rest of the album is made up entirely of songs culled from Diamond’s extensive catalogue, and there’s a good reason for that too. Sherry, who is of Maltese lineage (his family name is Xerri), has been a huge Neil Diamond fan since childhood. He has also successfully established himself as one of the top Neil Diamond tribute acts around the world thanks to his popular Diamond is Forever show, now in its first decade.
It is with good reason that Sherry chose Glory Road as the lead track on this album for, as he writes in the liner notes, “it tells the story of a regular guy with a special dream” and of the journey he undertakes in following that dream. To some extent, the song could have easily been about him, except it wasn’t. Yet, just as Diamond captured his own aspirations in that song, Sherry gives it his own touch and manages to inject it with similar emotions that reflect his own personal experiences.
Blessed with a voice that effortlessly mirrors Diamond’s familiar timbre, the album features a handpicked selection of classic Diamond hits – among them September Morn, Holly Holy, Sweet Caroline and I Am I Said – along with a few lesser-known gems like Hell Yeah or The Boat That I Row; a balance informed by his widespread fanbase’s preferences. There are also a few personal favourites which Sherry has reinterpreted here with passion, verve and an uncanny degree of authenticity that doesn’t sound like someone trying be Diamond. This is what makes this record special in its own way.
This article was first publishedon The Sunday Times of Malta (18 August, 2013)