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Jude Johnstone – Quiet Girl

maart 1st, 2011 at 19:43

BoJack Records

Justice at last?

A little over two years ago Jude Johnstone’s fifth solo-CD Mr. Sun once again did not bring her the recognition that she has deserved for years. She does get it in music circles, because not only did Johnny Cash, Bonnie Raitt and Emmylou Harris amongst other have hits with her songs, in these then new ones Jimmy LaFave, John David Souther and Rodney Crowell sing background vocals plus Emmylou Harris once again. Moreover: in Don’t Wake Me Up,  a song that is a little too radio friendly, Springsteen saxophone player Clarence Clemons, who discovered her, plays a solo.

It is the only song in which Johnstone makes concessions to a certain extent, hoping to be played on radio stations. That is understandable, because despite the hits still far too many have not heard about their author.

These songs once again cannot be the reason for that: the tender piano based ballads and the naturally flowing medium tempo songs have a self-evident, subdued musicality with influences from folk, singer-songwriter and jazz.

In these songs, spaciously produced by Johnstone together with Charles Duncan, melancholy and determination shine through in Johnstone’s somewhat nasal voice: if love does not prevails yet, it should do so some time in the future.  Sometimes the lyrics contain that vague hope, at other times it is the contrast between the words and the tone that give away Johnstone’s idealism.

Accompanied atmospherically by classy musicians or by seamlessly integrated drum loops Johnstone once again more than lives up to her long-since established personality among insiders and fellow musicians.


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