Janis Ian Between The Lines
Remastered by Kevin Gray from Original Analog Tapes
Lacquers cut using Acoustech’s all-analog system
Pressed at RTI
1. When the Party’s Over
2. At Seventeen
3. From Me To You
4. Bright Lights and Promises
5. In the Winter
6. Water Colors
7. Between the Lines
8. The Come On
9. Light a Light
10. Tea and Sympathy
11. Lover’s Lullaby
Boxstar Record’s David Fonn and Larry Marks have set out to give us high quality vinyl remasters of some of the best music from jazz, pop, rock, and even classical. Boxstar’s lacquers were cut using Acoustech’s all-analog system and pressed at RTI. The first LP I have heard from this company is Janis Ian’s hit LP Between the Lines. It was remastered by Kevin Gray from the original analog tapes.
This is an LP of which I have purchased a couple of used copies, and each sounded worn out or worse. So, I was ready to try a remastered copy. I have to say that the people at Boxstar have done a wonderful job with this LP.
If you don’t remember this album, it was originally released in 1975 when I was 21. It was the seventh, and probably most popular album from Janis Ian. Track two is her big hit “At Seventeen”. As I listened I was reminded just what a great song this is, but truth is the whole album is wonderful to listen to. No wonder she was awarded the 1975 Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for the song “At Seventeen”.
This LP is highly recommended first for the music, but also for its wonderful sound, and quiet surfaces.
Alison Krauss & Union Station Paper Airplane
Mastered by Brad Blackwood at Euphonic Masters, Memphis, TN
Pressed at RTI
Includes Limited Time Free mp3 download of the entire album
Alison Krauss, vocals, fiddle
Jerry Douglas, Dobro, lap steel, vocals
Dan Tyminski, guitar, mandolin, lead vocal
Ron Black, banjo, guitar
Barry Bales, bass, vocals
1. Paper Airplane
2. Dust Bowl Children
3. Lie Awake
4. Lay My Burden Down
5. My Love Follows You Where You Go
6. Dimming Of The Day
1. On The Outside Looking In
2. Miles To Go
3. Sinking Stone
4. Bonita And Bill Butler
5. My Opening Farewell
I look forward to any new album by Alison Krauss with great anticipation. In 1989 when she was only 17 I had the privilege of hearing her perform live with Union Station. I was blown away and have been ever since. She has gone on to win more Grammys by a female artist than anyone. At only 40 years old she has 26, which is 8 more than Aretha Franklin who is second on the list.
To me, she has the purest, most harmonic, and most versatile female voice I have ever heard. It’s not just her voice though, she is a wonderful nimble-fingered fiddle player. She started playing the violin at age 5 and it shows.
Paper Airplane is her and Union Station’s first album of all-new recordings since their 2004 album Lonely Runs Both Ways. It contains 11 songs that are true to her style but different enough to be fresh and emotionally poignant. Add to this the impeccable playing of Jerry Douglas, Dobro, Dan Tyminski, Ron Black, and Barry Bales and you have an album that is everything you would expect from this world-class group.
Carole King The Carnegie Hall Concert June 18, 1971
Mastered from the Original Master Tapes
1. I Feel The Earth Move
2. Home Again
3. After All This Time
4. Child Of Mine
5. Carry Your Load Side Two:
1. No Easy Way Down
2. Song Of Long Ago
3. Snow Queen
4. Smackwater Jack Side Three:
1. So Far Away
2. It’s Too Late
4. Way Over Yonder
5. Beautiful Side Four:
1. You’ve Got A Friend – Performed with James Taylor
Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow? – Performed with James Taylor
Some Kind Of Wonderful – Performed with James Taylor
Up On the Roof – Performed with James Taylor
3. (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman
In the 60s Carole King wrote hit song after hit song for others singers. Then, in 1971 she released the album Tapestry which transformed her from a song writer to a great singer/songwriter. Then in June of 1971 she finds herself performing at Carnegie Hall. The Carnegie Hall album is basically just her sitting at the piano, singing and playing to a full house.
On the first few numbers she seems a little nervous and the performance doesn’t really take off until she is joined by the rest of the musicians. The album is a wonderful time capsule and interesting in a historical sense. If I’m wanting to listen to Carole King, which I do from time to time, I’ll pull out one of her great studio albums.
Laura Nyro The First Songs
Mastered by Kevin Gray on 180g vinyl
1. Wedding Bell Blues
2. Billy’s Blues
3. California Shoeshine Boys
4. Blowing Away
5. Lazy Susan
6. Good By Joe
1. Flim Flam Man
2. Stoney End
3. I Never Meant To Hurt You
4. He’s A Runner
5. Buy And Sell
6. And When I Die
Since we just did a Carole King review, it only seemed fitting to close out this month’s LP reviews with the Laura Nyro reissue of The First Songs. The album was released under the title, More Than A New Discovery, at the beginning of 1967 and reissued, with a revised track order in 1973 as The First Songs. There is no way you can listen to Nyro and not hear her influence on King.
Laura Nyro had just turned 19 when she recorded this album in 1966. This debut album shows how Nyro can take pop numbers and turn them into bare-bone and powerful songs. The album shows off Nyro’s talent with a diverse mix of folk rock, jazzy cabaret stylings, blues, gospel and pop. At 19, Nyro sings all of this as if she’d been performing in them for decades. I found the album really a joy to listen to.
Nyro is one of the most overlooked and greatest singer/songwriters of her generation. I don’t know why she hasn’t become as popular as people she influenced, like Carole King, Janis Ian, and Rickie Lee Jones.
If you’re not familiar with her work, you should give her a listen.
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