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Blue Light 'Til Dawn


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Audio CD, November 6, 1993
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

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Cassandra Wilson is a postmodern jazz singer, a conceptualist who sees no dividing lines between genres. If her career had commenced in the 1970s rather than the label-conscious 1990s she would have been marketed as a mainstream pop diva. Her magnificent voice and interpretive genius mark her as a jazz singer for the ages, however. She finds her material wherever her fancy takes her and remakes it in her own image, whether it be the country blues of Robert Johnson's "Come On in My Kitchen" and "Hellhound On My Trail," the soul of Ann Peebles's "I Can't Stand the Rain," the elegant R&B of Charles Brown's "Tell Me You'll Wait for Me," the melodic pop of Joni Mitchell's "Black Crow," and Van Morrison's "Tupelo Honey," or her own "Redbone"--and the title track, accompanied by steel guitarist Gib Wharton. --John Swenson

1. You Don't Know What Love Is
2. Come On In My Kitchen
3. Tell Me You'll Wait For Me
4. Children Of The Night
5. Hellhound On My Trail
6. Black Crow
7. Sankofa
8. Estrellas
9. Redbone
10. Tupelo Honey
11. Blue Light 'Til Dawn
12. I Can't Stand The Rain

Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 6, 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Blue Note
  • ASIN: B000005HBI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #70,469 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Lance G. Rigley on January 20, 2001
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
After reviewing "Travelling Miles" from 1999,I decided to delve back to 1993 to see the basis for the former and to identify the progression in style and product from earlier Ms Wilson.Again I found this to be an adult CD requiring a serious attempt at listening to be fully rewarded,again the result is a unique,ambitious and soulful interpretation of some contemporary blues and soulful songs with the trademark Wilson touch.For those serious enough to step outside the square,this is for you..and in spades as well!!!
The talent is again that*voice* and the interpretative touches she puts onto songs by Van Morrison, Joni Mitchell and Robert Johnson,as well as others,including her own compositions Redbone and Blue Light Til Dawn.She is a maverick of the most interesting kind.I could see the street lights flickering ,the cats squelling the sirens sounding, the rubbish cans rattling,as I staggered home in the pre dawn hours..and that husky smoke laden delivery in my mind.Come On In My Kitchen and Hellhound on My Trail are provocative..if you dont get a kick at listening to these..check your pulse ...you may be dead!!!!
I think her interpretaion of I Cant Stand the Rain is excellent.This song lends itself to a Wilson interpretation,more interesting than the commerically exploited version of Eruption in the disco laden 70s and the interesting treatment given to it by Ronnie Wood on one of his albums years later.
As with the Miles Davis tribute,I found the muscianship excellent,with Ms Wilson showing her up front approach to a sparse and percussive accompaniment.This truely is an excellent album,that requires to be given a number of listens before the true talent can be appreciated.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By AOD on March 27, 2003
Format: Audio CD
So Cassandra's "New Moon Daughter" is a gem too, but this album is less known and, while it didn't make an immediate impression on me, I now listen to it a lot more. There's basically more variety in song style and arrangement and, if you like Cassandra, then just the sound of her voice is heaven. (If you haven't heard her, her voice is about as distinct as Nina Simone's.) The key point with Cassandra is: nobody sounds like her so if she isn't in your collection then nothing like her is in your collection. Her voice is deep and sultry, her music spacious, unrushed -- there's something distinctly southern about it. She is one of Nora Jones' inspirations, but where Nora's voice is a gentle breeze, Cassandra's is a gathering cloud, and there is no lounge sound to Cassandra's music -- the instruments bleed raw notes.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Frank Camm on March 22, 2006
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Repeatedly unexpected. Spare, care-ful arrangements, each specifically formulated for each song, each matching her rich, dark alto. First and foremost, serious jazz, but also something entirely different, reflecting an eclectic song choice (e.g., Robert Johnson, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, Ann Peebles, herself). Sometimes a primal awareness, but mainly a remarkable artistic sensibility. She DEMANDS attention, completely remaking even old favorites into something totally new. S: tr 2-Come on in my kitchen; tr 4-Children of the night, tr 5-Hellhound on my trail; tr 7-Sankofa; tr 10-Tupelo honey.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By J. Turner on July 6, 1999
Format: Audio CD
I bought this CD in 1993, shortly after its release and I have been a huge Cassandra Wilson fan ever since. You wouldn't guess this was a jazz CD if it wasnt labeled as such, as there is such an incredible variety of genres, including blues, pop, and African rhythms (contributed by Cyro Baptista's wonderful percussion). This album is easily one of my all-time favorites, and I never tire of hearing Wilson's beautiful, deep, sensuous voice.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Todd Hampton on September 25, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I brought this is after I played New Moon Daughter to death. It remains as my favorite Cassandra Wilson record. With NMD in mind i brought New moon daughter expecting to here the sound that I loved from that album. Boy,I was wrong. it's not that I didn't love Blue light to dawn it took me some time to truly digest where she was coming from musically. Wheras on New Moon,, her sound was very earthy almost a dusty memphis sound. On Blue light the feeling is more afican and blues based. Listening to this album is more like an experience. The sounds on Blue light are very intricate and deep. On children of the night theres a tribal rhythm that combines with Cassandra earthy, smoke voice that is enchanting. Sankofa is an african spiritual song that is done practically accapella. There are also a couple of Robert johnson songs covered by Cassandra. On come on in my kitchen cassandra wails on about a man that some girl got lucky and "stole him back again" very alluring. Hell hound on my tail is another RJ favorite that cassandra redoes to near perfection. But By far my favorite track is the final one the bewitching I can't stand the rain. On it you can really hear and feel how Cassandra's voice is much like an instrument playing along with the music. Blue light to dawn is a very good album, New Moon was perhaps a half step (that's arguable) but definetely an essential for Cassandra Wilson fans.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Rick Cornell VINE VOICE on January 24, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Of all of the vocal jazz albums released in the 1990's, this remains one of the best. Ms. Wilson shows tremendous range and diversity here: from a cover of "Tupelo Honey" that outdoes Van Morrison (if that's even possible), to a wonderfully evocative "Hellhound on My Trail", to "You Don't Know What Love Is". to the African-based trio in the middle of the set, it doesn't get much more eclectic than this. Yet, it's all interesting, with always interesting instrumentation. I think Cassandra Wilson falls in the mold of Billie Holiday--one with a relatively limited voice who just brings it all to the table--but with wider diversity. Very highly recommended.
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