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Famous Blue Raincoat [Import]

Jennifer WarnesAudio CD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (149 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 31, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Bmg Int'l 1987
  • ASIN: B000024QBF
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (149 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #174,741 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. First We Take Manhattan
2. Bird On A Wire
3. Famous Blue Raincoat
4. Joan Of Arc
5. Ain't No Cure For Love
6. Coming Back To You
7. Song Of Bernadette
8. A Singer Must Die
9. Came So Far For Beauty

Editorial Reviews

Import edition of the hit vocalist's acclaimed 1986 collection of Leonard Cohen covers which is long out of print in the US. Highlights include, 'First We Take Manhattan', 'Bird On A Wire' and 'Joan Of Arc' with guest vocal by Leonard Cohen. BMG. 2005.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
71 of 71 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Raincoat Remastered August 11, 2007
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This landmark 20-year-old collaboration between songwriter/poet Leonard Cohen and singer Jennifer Warnes is in my opinion the most successful album for either artist, both artistically and commercially. Warnes' pitch perfect, emotionally charged voice teases out every last nuance and dimension of Cohen's inspired lyrical and musical compositions. Even on Cohen's most highly charged songs, one is able to fully appreciate the sweet timbre of Warnes' voice, but at the same time the sensuality and beauty of her voice never obscures the sharp edged, painfully romantic, tragic, fatalistic themes that have marked Cohen's finest and most characteristic compositions, many of which are represented on this album.

Compared with the original CD release, the sound on this remastered version is better in almost every respect, with the possible exception of the first song "First We Take Manhattan," in which a slight, digital-sounding sibilance has been added to Warnes voice. The other cuts are just great, with the digital remastering adding a more authoritative bass note and greater ambience and spaciousness to the soundstage. .

If the overall improved sound isn't enough, this remastered album offers four additional performances of Cohen compositions that are not from the original studio album sessions, including a Warnes-only live version of Joan of Arc, which is riveting even though it doesn't offer the magical duet with Cohen featured on the original studio album. Each of the four additional cuts would have been worthy of inclusion on the original release of Famous Blue Raincoat, which is high praise indeed.
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49 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful artistry at the highest level August 13, 2007
Format:Audio CD
Jennifer Warnes is a master of nuance and inflection. No one weds a sound to a lyric (or a lyric to a sound) better than she does. More importantly, her content has always been rich in substance and inspiring in tone. She can locate the silver linings in sadness, and remind us that we all are capable of transcending our setbacks and healing our wounds. These are among the reasons why I have been so dedicated to her music for more than thirty years, and why Leonard Cohen himself has given her his blessings repeatedly and many times over. As I would expect from the gifted singer Warnes, the familiar tunes on the 20th anniversary edition of Famous Blue Raincoat still resonate with elegance and warmth, and, technically, they sound better than ever. In the new songs, Warnes takes us to some exciting new places that will delight her fans and win her new ones. "If It Be Your Will" is an entrancing journey into poetic tenderness, while "Ballad of the Runaway Horse" is a masterful narrative that Warnes meticulously articulates with wonderfully complex rhythms, accompanied by an array of subtle sound effects that are beautifully suited to the story. And for pure soothing comfort, Warnes gifts us a sensuous lullaby for adults with "Night Comes On." A final treat is a recording of a live performance of "Joan of Arc." Accompanied by an orchestra and chorus, Warnes gives a spellbinding performance that shines with honest spontaneity and grace.

David S. Rubin
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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite interpretations September 8, 2007
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This original album was released at a time when Cohen was almost forgotten, about seven years before tribute albums like the breathtaking I'm Your Fan and the rather tepid Tower of Song would spur renewed interest in his work. Warnes' versions are always graceful and moving. She understands Cohen's music well, having done backing vocals on albums like Various Positions so she interprets his songs with loving dedication.

My favorites include Aint No Cure For Love from Cohen's I'm Your Man, Coming Back To You and Night Comes On from Various Positions, Came So Far For Beauty and Ballad Of The Runaway Horse from Recent Songs and of course the formidable Joan Of Arc where Cohen himself sings some of the verses. The title track stands out with its smoky sax and desolate ambience whilst the live version of Joan Of Arc really fires on all fours.

Warnes' voice is the perfect vehicle for Cohen's poetic lyrics of romantic longing and resigned despair. The new tracks are superb. She slightly adapted the lyric of Night Comes On to a female perspective, and Ballad Of The Runaway Horse becomes a long excursion with a complex arrangement and a display of great virtuosity in the instrumentation which includes viola and cello.
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42 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best U.S. pop albums of the last 20 years! January 4, 2002
Format:Audio CD
Jennifer Warnes is a singer's singer, and Leonard Cohen is a songwriter's songwriter. They are each at the front of their game...and are brilliant in unique, almost tangible ways. I am not certain whose idea this CD was, but what a wondrous pairing! Warnes adds new levels to each of the eight excellent Cohen songs she interprets here...and does a remarkable job on her songwriting collaboration with Cohen, "Song of Bernadette." Americans barely noticed this superb collection; it was overshadowed by Warnes' #1 song "The Time Of My Life" of the same year. However, I don't believe anyone can say he or she has heard Jennifer Warnes without hearing this recording first! Warnes' immaculate interepretation of "Famous Blue Raincoat" blows Tori Amos' well-known version out of the water! Just as exquisite are "Bird On A Wire," "First We Take Manhattan" and "Ain't No Cure For Love." Warnes and her co-producer, C. Roscoe Beck, handpicked a batch of amazing musicians for this 1987 CD, including a Stevie Ray Vaughan guitar performance that is mind-blowing! Snatch this CD up and listen to it like there is no's brilliant!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE THIS CD - BUY IT!! YOU WILL LOVE IT AS WELL!
This CD is amazing! The lyrics written by Leonard Cohen are just superb and you can listen to the songs over and over again yet still pick up some nuance or theme that you hadn't... Read more
Published 1 day ago by Nancy SW
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Voice!
Jennifer Warnes has a wonderful voice and style. Recommend.
Published 9 days ago by Janice E. Schechter
5.0 out of 5 stars Just amazing
I had the original when it came out and it became one of my favorite albums. This anniversary CD is fresh, exciting and has extra tracks. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Marvin Minkler
5.0 out of 5 stars Original DDD Release Was and Is a Performance/Sonic Stunner
When the all-digital (that is, "DDD"; be sure to look for it) compact disc first came out many decades ago of Jennifer Warnes's FAMOUS BLUE RAINCOAT, everyone who initially... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Rose Trellis
3.0 out of 5 stars Famous Blue Rain Coat
The jewel case was is broken and I collect so that is very important to me.Does not meet the discription.
Published 3 months ago by Morris Fruling
5.0 out of 5 stars i keep buying it........
I first heard this when I bought my first high-end system back in '89 and the seller recommended it. Since then, I keep buying each new release...anniversary or 24k. Why? Read more
Published 4 months ago by Roy E. Bergeson
5.0 out of 5 stars Leonard's work never sounded better
Jennifer does Leonard proud and this album just HAS to be had! She and Leonard were close friends, and it shows here.
Published 5 months ago by RAE
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 star+
Jennifer Warnes maybe most popular album ever. And for a good reason. All songs created by Leonard Cohen, - a longtime close friend of her. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Egil Haugland
5.0 out of 5 stars Jennifer Warnes
She is so talented and makes for
great background music. After reading
the I'm your Man (Leonard Cohen)
book I had to buy it. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Judith R Poirier
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
Jennifer Warnes gives a lovely presentation of Leonard Cohen's music. Recommend it and well worth the effort to find it.
Published 6 months ago by C. Weihl
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