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Grace Darling: Imaginary Lover

Jim Santella By

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New Orleans supplies the rhythms, Al Kooper supplies the title track, and Grace Darling supplies the pop vocals. Loose and expressive, the singer works with a strong band and capable male backup vocalists. Darling adds her lucid tenor saxophone on seven tracks for color and variety. In her hands, the instrument sings out clear and strong, but it is used merely to reinforce and embellish the melodies. With its emphasis on backbeats and lyrics, this session employs the ensemble as a whole entity; its mission is simply to see that you enjoy the stories being told.

Like its blues ancestors, "Speak of the Devil" tells about an abusive husband who sleeps all day and drinks all night. "Voodoo Doll," "Getting Over You" and "What Lovers Do," present the usual conversations between lovers. For its portrayal of an appropriate attitude, Darling's song "Hit the Road" brings a smile to your face as she relates its familiar theme. Although the session is under 40 minutes in length, each track is loaded with rhythm and guaranteed to start your feet tappin'. Grace Darling's tenor saxophone sound is bold and clear. She begins to stretch out during the final minute of the final number; perhaps when the time is right she'll show the audience more of her jazz side.


Track Listing: I'll Go with You; Speak of the Devil; You're My Imaginary Lover; Going Nowhere Fast; Sally on a Streetcar; Voodoo Doll; Getting Over You; What Lovers Do; Ring Dang Do; Hit the Road.

Title: Imaginary Lover | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: NYNO


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