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Never Been Gone

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Audio CD, October 26, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

The new album revisits songs originally written throughout Carly's extensively long and productive career. With new largely acoustic arrangements, the CD was recorded at home on the island of Martha's Vineyard. Carly's son Benjamin Taylor was the originator of the idea and Carly willingly (though sometimes hesitatingly) complied and lived up to the dare. Carly, Benjamin and the rest of the producers, known as Paphiopedilium , chose the songs, most of which were Carly's best-known and commercially successful. In the CD's generous liner notes is an explanation not only of the word Paphiopedilium , but an explanation of the reworking of each of the songs. Carly hopes that even without these notes, the music will speak for itself.

We are proud to give Carly's fans old and new, a brand new look at ten of her best loved, well-known songs as well as two never-heard-before surprises.

NEVER BEEN GONE includes "You're So Vain" , "Coming Around Again" , "Anticipation", "Let The RiverRun" , "You Belong To Me", "That's The Way I've Always Heard It Should Be", "It Happens Every Day", "Never Been Gone", "Boys In The Trees", and "The Right Thing To Do" along with new songs "No Freedom" and "Songbird".
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 26, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: October 26, 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Iris Records Label
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #83,122 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 27 people found the following review helpful By B. DiGiorgio on November 1, 2009
Format: Audio CD
This album is, largely, good. I've been a Carly fan since her first album in 1971. Yes, her voice isn't as strong as it once was, but, overall at 64, it's damn good! The two major disappointments here are "It Happens Everyday" and "You're So Vain," which are both terribly flawed by hokey background vocals by Carly and others. In "Everyday," that happens to be Carly screeching something about girls packing their suitcases to live in friends' SoHo apartments. It's like a fingernail on a chalkboard. And her son's hokey and poor arrangement, with background vocals repeating "give it to the girls" is laughable and, together, these flaws ruin a song I believe is one of Carly's best from "Hello Big Man." The other real disappointment is "You're So Vain," again flawed by a hokey background vocal about "I need more cow milk." Just hokey, cheap and sounding like it was recorded in a garage. Come on, Ben and Carly, you can do much, much better! Because Carly has distinguished herself from her contemporaries and the motley crew of sleazy songstresses of today, I guess we expect more from her, which may be unfair.

The new songs are good, "Ain't No Freedom" and "Songbird." I wonder when "Ain't" was wrtten. The first part of "Songbird" is obviously a demo recording from '70 or '71, and the second part is Carly recording anew. It works well. I think the two best cuts are "Never Been Gone," and "Let the River Run." Both are beautiful. Carly's voice sounds strong and the melodies are beautiful. "That's The Way I've Always Heard It Should Be" and "Anticipation" are both very good and, IMHO, more upbeat than the orginals, though I love the originals.
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Nancy Brewerton on October 27, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have never written a review here, but have read my fair share. In my opinion, this is one of carly's best work in years. Her vocals sincere, moving and heartfelt. The influence of her son Ben, probably made for some of the playful touchs here and there. I have listened to Carly ALOT, for more years than I care to say. Let's just say from day one. She shines here and sounds like she really enjoyed this labor of love. 5 stars. Buy it.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Skywalker30 on February 22, 2010
Format: Audio CD
I agree with the amateurish sound review, but I love the fact that the album sounds as if you had invited Carly and children home and Ben grabs the guitar after dinner. Very intimate sound, great surprising rearrangements. Careful, this review comes from a guy that prefers the bonus Acoustic tracks on the "Carly Simon - A Moonlight Serenade On The Queen Mary II" with just the guitar player and her daughter, more than the actual concert.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By JS on October 29, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
We were lucky to see Carly perform many of the songs from this new album in New York at Lincoln Center, Tuesday night, as part of the Grammy Museum Series. Each song was a GEM! No one wanted the evening to end! Beginning with "Let The River Run" after which she received a standing ovation and ending with an oh so beautiful version of "Coming Around Again." Was there ever another way? There were many tears in the eyes of the audience when she began to sing Coming Around Again--what a song--this version is very emotional and Carly gave it a poignancy that only years and living life can bring.

Another amazing song--actually an INCREDIBLE performance--- was "You Belong To Me"... Carly was joined by John Forte (of the Fugees) on this and together the chemistry was fantastic! A whole new way of looking at this great song! Carly performed this with John Forte on the album and on the Today show yesterday.

The musicians were fabulous--you knew that as soon as they began playing--the sound was GORGEOUS-- can't think of a better word--These musicians are also with her on the album, Peter Calo, Teese Gohl, David Saw, D.J. Logic. What a combination--Peter and Teese have been with Carly on many of her great albums and concerts(which we would love to have more of!)

Part of the proceeds of this album go to the Carly Simon Music Initiative--a collaboration with the Berklee School of Music. The group concentrates on bringing the therapeutic benefits of music into the community.

Great listening on this album-- a whole new way of looking at some of Carly's favorite hits. Carly is a fascinating individual who brings intelligence to music and lyrics--this is no exception!
Thank you Carly!
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Susan Lewis on October 26, 2009
Format: Audio CD
What is about age that softens things for so many of us? Don't be a hater and please take the chance and explore these new interpretations of these old hits from this classic artist. The sadness is gone from "It Happen's Everyday', the anger from "You're So Vain', but there is still lot's of the fun. Several of these performances even surpass the orginals....."Let the River Run", the title track, and the re-working "Boys in the Tree's will have Joni Mitchell feeling she is missing a cut from 'Court and Spark'. One new song "No Freedom" comes off like a fascinating Beatles 'Sargent Pepper' time-warp. "Songbird' and the merging of the old with the new is the collection's one big miss. A great Carly song but she should have just re-recorded it in today's voice, which is incidentally, still pretty good. It is clear Simon is still a very vital, relevant musician and like all great artist's, always taking chances.
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Carly's new album is really unneccessary
I am in your corner. I love Carly, and this would have been a fun concert down
in a decent club. BUT as a new CD So What ????
Nov 7, 2009 by George C. Hutton |  See all 2 posts
carly from one of your biggest fans STOP SINGING
i too was in a sad shock when i heard the new release--NEVER BEEN GONE--samples. perhaps she can do a bit of collaboration with a small selection of fellow musicians who could enhance/blend with her current voice, but as far as singing solo---that NEEDS TO BE GONE.
Oct 18, 2009 by lc |  See all 47 posts
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