Ruth Young | This Is Always

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Jazz: Jazz Vocals Jazz: Avant-Garde Jazz Moods: Type: Vocal
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This Is Always

by Ruth Young

'She strongly reflects the "cool yet dark and appealingly fragile" vocal stylings of jazz trumpeter Chet Baker with whom she lived and traveled for almost a decade (1973-82).'
Genre: Jazz: Jazz Vocals
Release Date: 

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Tracks

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  song title
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time
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1. Whatever Possessed Me
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4:50 $2.00
2. This Is Always
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5:01 $2.00
3. Time After Time
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2:50 $2.00
4. The Wind
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5:16 $2.00
5. I Fall in Love Too Easily
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5:18 $2.00
6. You're My Thrill
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5:16 $2.00
7. Deep in a Dream
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5:12 $2.00
8. Let's Get Lost
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3:02 $2.00
9. My Ideal
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6:00 $2.00
10. The Thrill Is Gone
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6:05 $2.00
11. Look for the Silver Lining
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3:33 $2.00
12. But Not for Me
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3:25 $2.00
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
There was a certain sense of nagging familiarity as I listened to the first track of this jazz vocal album. As soon as I heard the first notes of “Whatever Possessed Me,” it all fell into place. This is an album of all Chet Baker-associated tunes. Ruth Young was Baker's main squeeze from 1973-1982 and an integral part of the infamous Bruce Weber documentary film Let's Get Lost, released in 1989. Young was also the daughter of Max Youngstein, Vice President of United Artists Company, and as such she was raised in the worlds of Beverly Hills and New York City and became an acquaintance of many high-profile film stars.

When she met the trumpet/vocal legend, Young became immersed in his world of music and drugs for almost a decade before breaking off the relationship. The music chosen for his debut recording is not a tribute recording, but, as she puts it, “my heartfelt dedication to Chet's memory of our own very private and public years together.” The liner notes were written by James Gavin, the author of the very revealing biography Deep In A Dream: The Long Night of Chet Baker, published in 2002.

The dozen selections were recorded in Augsburg, Germany at the studio of Wolfgang Lackerschmid, the vibist with whom Baker had recorded several fine albums in the late 1970s. Young also selected veteran ex-pat saxman Herb Geller, with whom Baker recorded some wonderful 1950s West Coast sessions, as well as pianist Walter Lang and bassist Rocky Knauer. Geller supplies several sinuous alto solos and helps to reconstruct the world of 1955 all over again. Her choice to go without a drummer was a carryover of Chet Baker's own preferences.

To no one's surprise, the presentation and delivery of the songs is a time capsule Chet Baker vocal session with Ruth Young eerily emulating Baker's phrasing and timing. Is this imitation or art? You're not going to get any negatives out of this fan! If you are partial to the Baker vocal mystique, then this recording should do the trick for you. Despite an occasional intonation problem, Ruth Young admirably recreates an era and even includes some previously unheard verses for “This Is Always” and “Let's Get Lost.”


Reviews


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Sven Wielandt

This is Always
A dirty trick for sure!
Those tracks recorded seven years ago, mixed in 2004/5??? and eventually landed on my turntable just one month ago i.e april 2009. Incredible!

Being a fairly well-baked fan of Chet for more than fifty years I naturally did know that Ruth Young was living and touring with him for a number of years way back in the seventies. However, never knew nothing about her being a singer. Let alone, on such an original level.
Ruth is no virtuoso and may not cover too many octaves. - So what? Equilibrists are popping up all over the place anyway. But she is her true and genuine self on this marvellous CD where her intimate, husky voice particularly nourishing all the beautiful ballads. Think maybe she should stick to that sort of songs...blue and saturated ballads, that is.

Excellent crew backing her up - with Herb Geller's
altosax jumping in on half the titles. That man is
always good.
This being said, though...I'm sure Ruth Young would make it terrificly with just bass and piano/guitar.

To cut it short, folks...This is Always is a must.
Go get it!

Sven Wielandt,
Copenhagen, Denmark