Tuesday, October 21, 2014


It makes sense that Annie Lennox would nail a song like I Put A Spell On You. After all, isn't the song Lennox is arguably best known for,  the Eurythmics' classic Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This), an update of sorts of the Spell? As a matter of fact, there isn't one song on Annie's new album, Nostalgia, which is made up of songs from her youth and most the Great American Songbook, that her voice doesn't float over with ease. This is not exactly a party record, but at 59 and with a storied career trailing in her wake, Lennox has MORE than earned the right to croon her way through 45 minutes of her favorite tunes. You've got them all here: Classics by Hoagy Carmichael, George Gershwin, Duke Ellington and many more. Opening the album with an old Victrola sounding recording of Carmichael (I think) singing Memphis In June, Lennox covers the song is lush strings and cooing vocals to set the tone for Nostalgia. Georgia On My Mind is given a treatment -- and don't let this dissuade you from listening -- of a classic Air Supply or Styx soft rocker. I know that sounds weird, but shut up and listen to it. Her soft, controlled Summertime is perhaps the best version of this ubiquitous song I have ever heard from a modern recording artist, and Strange Fruit, co-written and made famous by none other than Billie Holiday, retains every bit of its eerie presence as Lennox mournfully sings about the lynchings of African Americans in the South in the early part of the 20th century. You Belong To Me, The Nearness of You and, well, all of the tracks are beautifully arranged and performed and, even though outside of Annie's usual boathouse, sit perfectly on her golden voice. Nostalgia is a glorious addition to her varied, eclectic catalog and is sure to please any (adult) listener out there. A wonderful new classic from the first lady of Blue Eyed Soul. Enjoy a live performance Georgia On My Mind below.

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