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Aretha Franklin - Let Me in Your Life (1994) Retail CD
Aretha's golden period is generally seen to include 1974, when this album was released, but "Let Me In Your Life" seldom gets a mention amongst all her classic albums. Well in my view it deserves to be right up there with the material generally regarded as her best.
"Let Me In Your Life" is notable for the superb choice of songs, and although Lady Soul herself contributes 2 songs, the album includes songs by a who's who of 70's songwriting, all given the Aretha makeover.
Bill Wither's original of the title track was an ethereal and low tempo plea for love, but Aretha turns it into an funky numbermore…. Obviously inspired, Aretha took the same idea and penned "If you Don't Think", but decided on a ballad treatment. Ashford and Simpson's "Ain't Nothin..." had been a hit for Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell, but undaunted by that, Aretha gives it her best, reinforcing the songs optimistic mood, which continues with a superb reading of Bobby Womack's "I'm In Love". These are all tracks which notable for Franklin's ability to wring feeling from a song without tipping into sentimentality.
The early 70's had seen a low point in Aretha's personal life, following her split with husband Ted White. It was during this period that she had recorded some of her most impassioned work. "With Pen In Hand" came from 1971 and is a work of such raw intensity, and was considered so deeply personal, that it had been held over since then. Seldom can heartbreak have been captured quite so beautifully. Covering the same ground is "The Masquerade is Over", with a restrained production, which allows Aretha's vocal take centre stage, with equally devastsing results.
Probably the best known track here, from it's single release, "Until You Come Back To Me" has an aching lyric, belied by the jaunty arrangement, but rescued by Aretha's positive but controlled vocal. Two tracks which are similar in style were "Every Natural Thing" and "8 Days on the Road", both funky and uptempo, but generally unremarkable.
The album is completed by two hymns to love, "Oh Baby" and "Song For You", each of which reflected Aretha's more settled personal circumstances at the time of recording this album. "Oh Baby" was written by Franklin herself and featured Donny Hathaway on piano. Leon Russell's "Song For You" has been much covered, but Aretha gives a quite superb reading, and makes the song a deeply personal statement.
Aretha would leave Atlantic after just 2 more albums, her success impacted by changing tastes (if Disco can be called taste!), but this album stands as a testament to the conclusion of a period that has been called the "Golden Reign" of the Queen of Soul. It is a beautiful recording that deserves to be better regarded.
|1||Let Me In Your Life|
|2||Every Natural Thing|
|3||Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing|
|4||I'm In Love|
|5||Until You Come Back To Me (That's What I'm Gonna Do)|
|6||Masquerade Is Over|
|7||With Pen In Hand|
|9||Eight Days On The Road|
|10||If You Don't Think|
|11||Song For You|
- Aretha Franklin - Let Me in Your Life (1994) Retail CD
- 1449 x 1420 px
- 490 KB
- 247 (0 today)
- 14/08/08 by Viking2008
- Quality Rating:
Rated 5 of 5 (1 votes). Click CDs to vote!