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Rosie Thomas, 'It'll Be Alright'

Parenthood is a litany of failures somehow balanced out by participation trophies – metaphorical and physical, both cheap yet meaningful. OK, it's more than that, but the daily grind of professional and personal life (often the lack thereof) can amplify the sleep deprivation and frustration that come with the satisfying giggles and "I love you'"s. Rosie Thomas, who hasn't released an album in nine years, is a mom of three, and returns for a series of singles she dubs Lullabies for Parents. Previous collaborators and friends like Sufjan Stevens, David Bazan, Iron & Wine, Dawn Landes and others will contribute.

On "It'll Be Alright," Thomas plays the role of doula to parental worry and doubt. The piano is sparse, fluffed by a cozy pillow of ambient strings and dinging bells, but the center is her voice – quiet and maybe about to cry, but determined. But as the arrangement builds and Thomas repeats the title with equal reassurance and reluctance – like anytime you tell someone it'll be alright, without truly knowing – she offers this saving grace, in hopes that this loving work will grow: "Maybe in some ways, showing you my flaws / Will make you kinder to yourself when you see yours."

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