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Billie's Bones


Price: $24.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Audio CD, February 24, 2004
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Billie's Bones + Between the Lines + The Essential Janis Ian
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 24, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Oh Boy
  • ASIN: B0001EFU78
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #335,802 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Billie's Bones
2. My Tennessee Hills
3. Paris in Your Eyes
4. Marching on Glasgow [Instrumental]
5. I Hear You Sing Again
6. Forever Young
7. Matthew
8. Amsterdam
9. Dead Men Walking
10. Save Somebody
11. Mockingbird
12. Mary's Eyes
13. When I Lay Down

Editorial Reviews

Review

An album that contains multiple ideas that entertain as they unravel in a unique and impressive fashion. -- All Music Guide

Product Description

As Rolling Stone says, "Before there was Jewel, there was Janis Ian." The singer-songwriter shows off her skills with a Dolly Parton duet and a "co-write" with Woody Guthrie.

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
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See all 23 customer reviews
Wonderful songs, beautiful lyrics and melodies.
m. van deursen
The masterpiece of the album for me is "Mathew", with its jazzy feel telling the story of Mathew Shepherd who was murdered in the USA because he was gay.
Anna McCabe
In this album, Janis Ian again proves that she is a masterful singer and songwriter.
susan mcmillan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Judy on April 8, 2004
Format: Audio CD
On my first listen to "Billie's Bones" I wondered, "Where's the punch?" It was a nice enough listen, but I wasn't struck by my usual awe that Janis Ian inspires. So I listened again...this time really listened and I ended the CD thinking that this is the most consistently powerful, creative writing I've heard from her (or anyone) in years. The writing is extraordinary. There are too many perfect lines from too many songs on this album for me to elaborate. Briefly stated: this album should be used as a teaching guide for high school and college students who need to hear written thought reduced to a few exquisite words.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Lee Armstrong HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 11, 2004
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
"Billie's Bones" continues the creative streak for Janis Ian who is repeatedly hitting artistic heights. Four songs on the set comprise a bit of a travelogue. The most familiar for me is a song I fell in love with on Joan Baez's 1992 CD "Play Me Backwards." Janis writes "Amsterdam" with Buddy Mondlock who recently worked with Art Garfunkel & Maia Sharp on the gorgeous "Everything Waits to Be Noticed" CD. Janis marries a particularly haunting melody with intricate lyrical images, "Just the scent of perfume on the linen, just the print of a palm on the pillow, just the hint of the moon from the window, Amsterdam." "Paris In Your Eyes" boasts a romantically drenched lyric with a soft acoustic melody, "Every time I touched you, I could taste a breath of spring." Another stop on Janis' travelogue is the excellent instrumental "Marching on Glasgow." The last song with a geographic title reference is "My Tennessee Hills" with Dolly Parton's lovely supporting vocal. The most powerful song for me combines a Billie Holiday "Strange Fruit" jazz-blues approach to the death of Matthew Shepard, "What makes a man a man? The cut of a coat, the hint of a tan? It's not who you love, but whether you can, What makes a man a man." On "Save Somebody" Janis' distinctive melody combines with an incredibly poetic lyric, "There's a crack in the heavens & a tear in the sky; it cuts through the shadows living in her eyes." Janis' tribute to Mary Black is quite lovely. If one measured the creative high points of Janis Ian's career, an appropriate metaphor would be the Andes Mountains. This is another exquisite set by one of our master musicians. Bravo!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Kathleen A. Brogan on March 17, 2004
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Billie's Bones is a virtual "Tour De Force" of music! It runs around all musical sytles. Jazzy, political "Matthew", Country "Mockingbird", "Paris In Your Eyes" (unexpected twang, yet a cello solo at the end), "Forever Young" and "My Tennessee Hills" where Janis duets with Dolly Parton. I enjoy that one much more than "Memphis" with Willie Nelson on "God & the FBI". There's even a European influence with the Celtic style instrumental "Marching on Glasgow", and the poetic "Mary's Eyes", tribute to artist Mary Black. Once again, Janis is as gutsy and controversial as always, I am most impressed with "When I Lay Down", which reminds me of "Restless Eyes" from 1981, yet the statement is even bolder! Anyone who has lost a parent will tear up at "I Hear You Sing Again" One of the catchiest tunes is "Dead Men Walking". The sales are already heating up on this release from late February of 2004. This is a must have for Janis Ian collectors, but even if you only own the popular "Between the Lines", I know you'll enjoy this one. We "Rudies" are already fondly calling it "Unreleased 4" (an inside joke)!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 15, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Okay, I'll admit it. I've been a Janis Ian devotee since I was a teenager identifying with her infamous "At Seventeen." Every time Janis is in town, I make it a point to see her concert. There is not one person in all of the music industry, in any genre, who even compares. Janis has it all. She is the quintessential renaissance talent. Her songwriting gift outshines in every possible genre. Her guitar playing is above and beyond the best in rock, jazz and blues. Her tender vocals express the pain and joy in every lyric line. And with "Billie's Bones," Janis has once again risen to the occasion on every track. As a followup album to her "Live Without A Net" CD (also a must buy), "Billie's Bones" speaks to all ages.
There simply isn't a better songwriter to be found. Janis makes every word count. Every note rings true.
If you think you know Janis Ian, she proves that there's much more to discover. If you've never heard Janis Ian, buy "Billie's Bones" and "Live Without A Net." And then get thee to her next concert for an amazing performance!
I guarantee you that once you've experienced Janis Ian's music, you will be moved by the power of her talents.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Alvin Porter on February 24, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Norah Jones is lovely, easy to listen to. Indigo Girls are the same as they've always been. But only Janis Ian combines cutting edge songwriting with astonishing growth, as a vocalist, player, and writer.
This album is extraordinary. It has heart, it has truth, it has everything you'd ever want. Best of all, it grows on you with each hearing.
I have a feeling this album is destined to be the same kind of classic Ian's "Between the Lines" was.
If you miss out on this album because it's not being hyped by a major label, that's a real pity.
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