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Pirates


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Pirates
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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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$9.35 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 11 left in stock. Sold by megahitrecords and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews


Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
  1. We Belong Together 5:03$0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. Living It Up 6:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. Skeletons 3:40$0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. Woody And Dutch On The Slow Train To Peking 5:17$0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. Pirates [So Long Lonely Avenue] 3:54$0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. A Lucky Guy 4:09$0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. Traces Of The Western Slopes 7:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. The Returns 2:19$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Warner Bros Mod Afw
  • ASIN: B000002KL7
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,392 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

100 of 105 people found the following review helpful By Karl Miller on January 7, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Rickie Lee Jones' 2nd album marked a radical departure for the beret wearing, Jack Daniel's swilling Coolsville resident. Piano-based and Steely Dan influenced, "Pirates" remains, over 20 years after it's release one of the most haunting pieces of music ever recorded. It marked a creative highwater mark that (unfortunately for all), Rickie has never again reached.
From the opening notes of "We Belong Together", it's clear that this work is much sadder than her debut. "We Belong Together" is every great male-rocking-loner song, with incredible shifts of tempo and texture, and a vocal performance that is gut-wrenching. "Living It Up", with its "Wild, and the Only Ones" chorus and awesome bridge (thanks to a great contribution from Sal Bernardi, Rickie's ex-lover and long term accompaniest), is the musical equivalent of the solemn Brassai photograph that adorns the album's cover. "Woody and Dutch" is the keyboard cousin of Rickie's "Danny's All Star Joint", with caramel coated basslines and cotton candy spun call and response vocals. "Pirates (So Long Lonely Avenue)" reminds you of why horns are so sadly missed in this era of teen vocals and electronic instrumentation. And the genuine masterpiece of this album, "Traces Of The Western Slope" is a near 8 minute tribute to distant ghosts, vacant eyed dope fiends and sexual awakening, played out with Becker and Fagen inspired instrumentation and Tom Waits like lyrics. No woman has ever written, or laid down a jazz/rock classic that comes near this song.
Between birthdays, Christmas gifts, and replacing copies that I have owned (on 3 different formats), I have probably purchased at least 30 copies of this disc over the years. And yet I still don't feel like I have fully compensated Rickie Lee for the contribution she made to my muscial education with this album. It has grown with me like an old friend, and remains to this day an all time favorite.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By J. Collins on June 23, 2000
Format: Audio CD
"Pirates" is a difficult but musically (and emotionally) rewarding album. I believe that it sounds better as time goes by, though unlike some Pop albums, "Pirates" ages like a fine wine, not cheese. To be fair, this isn't truly a Pop album, but given the imprecision of most stylistic terms (Rock, Soul, etc.) and the wide range of musical influences here, it would seem to become popular music by default.
Like Rickie's self-titled debut, "Pirates" is a collection of mostly acoustic music, with snatches of Folk, R&B, Blues, Torch, and what is now called "New Age" material. Then (1981) as now, it is a unique combination of lyrical prose and inspired musical drama. The tone is often somber and dead serious, but there are moments where a "good time" vibe ("Woody and Dutch...") and Rickie's self-effacing humor ("A Lucky Guy") lighten the mood.
Though a superficial reading of this album would suggest it's about Rickie's failed affair with mentor/lover Tom Waits, the topical and emotional focus of this album would seem to be solitude...reflections on the state of being alone and adrift. And though Rickie's phrasing/vocalizing is atypical for Pop music, the directness and passion of her performance is shiver-inducing. Attentive (and willing) listeners will experience feelings beyond empathy, as if the pain and disillusion comes from within and not from Rickie's words and music. To put it more succinctly, only a dim-witted lout or cynical misanthrope could listen to this album and not be moved in some way.
The "best" of this album is hard to define, as different listeners will have different songs that define their listening experience.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Darren on January 11, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Honestly, her voice got on my nerves back in the late 70's when she debuted with her popular "Chuck E's in Love", so I never really listened to her later material. It wasn't until my musical taste widened and matured that I later went back to some of her compositions and discovered what a very talented lyricist and storyteller Rickie Lee Jones is.
Although Pirates was released back in 1981, it remains one of my favorite CDs. It displays Rickie's master songwriting ability and proves her a musical storyteller of high emotional intensity and clarity. Her urban stories are set in a 'groovy', bohemian and vivid blend of folk, blues and jazzy musical compositions. In addition, one selection features jazz artists David Sanborn on alto sax and Randy Brecker on the trumpet and flugelhorn.
If you have never listened to Rickie Lee Jones, I highly suggest Pirates as it will move you emotionally and may even get your head shaking, feet stomping and fingers snapping.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By G. Alexander on August 7, 2009
Format: Audio CD
As other reviewers have discussed and debated the merits of Pirates' songs and Rickie Lee's vocals, I will limit these comments to the quality of MoFi's remaster. The album itself was beautifully recorded, with veteran Warner Brothers producers (Bonnie Raitt, Randy Newman et al) Lenny Waronker and Russ Titelman at the helm and a number of skilled engineers, such as Elliot Scheiner, at the board. Many of the backing musicians, such as Randy Brecker (of BS&T and jazz fame), Victor Feldman, Steve Gadd (of "Aja" fame) and Chuck Rainey, were (and remain) the finest studio and touring musicians in the U.S. and were also used by Steely Dan; indeed, Donald Fagen himself also appears on the album. In short, this remaster is the closest to quality vinyl that I have heard, it is a notable and significant improvement over the regular "redbook" CD and it does real justice to the album's stellar production and the high quality of the songwriting and performances. The differences are readily notable from the first song, "We Belong Together," in which Gadd's drums finally regain their depth and power, and similarly for the joyous bouncing bass on "Woody and Dutch . . ." For those who don't have an SACD player, don't worry. I played this MoFI version on both regular redbook and SACD playback and I prefer the regular version, as it sounds a bit warmer and less harsh but with all of the sonic detail intact. If you do have at least a decent playback stereo system and get a thrill out of clearly hearing individual instruments and how they interweave and combine in the final mixdown, and (of course) if you enjoy Rickie Lee's music, then I would recommend reaching deep in the pocket and spending the requisite dollars for this MoFi hybrid SACD remaster. BTW, the "mini-LP cover" packaging is made of high quality, thick cardboard and the booklet is nicely manufactured as well.
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