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Poems, Prayers and Promises

4.7 out of 5 stars 102 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Among the surprises here are terrific covers of the Beatles' Let It Be and James Taylor's Fire and Rain . Those two join his later hit, My Sweet Lady , plus Take Me Home, Country Roads; Sunshine On My Shoulders; Gospel Changes; Wooden Indian ; the title track, and more.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Poems, Prayers and Promises
  2. Let It Be
  3. My Sweet Lady
  4. Wooden Indian
  5. Junk
  6. Gospel Changes
  7. Take Me Home, Country Roads
  8. I Guess He'd Rather Be in Colorado
  9. Sunshine on My Shoulders
  10. Around And Around
  11. Fire And Rain
  12. The Box


Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 4, 2010)
  • Original Release Date: May 4, 2010
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: SBME SPECIAL MKTS.
  • Run Time: 38 minutes
  • ASIN: B003O5MNIU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (102 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,934 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Barron Laycock HALL OF FAME on August 25, 2000
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
With the release of this album in 1971, John Denver delivered the songs that would soon propel him into superstardom. All the elements he then used to achieve such singular fame and fortune as the best-selling and most popular singer of the 1970s is here, from his fabulously successful first hit "Take Me Home, Country Roads" to the under- appreciated counterculture anthem "Poems, Prayers And Promises". Denver almost single-handedly began the outdoor backpacking, hiking, and orienteering movements by popularizing the idea of nature as an important element in modern life, and more than a few of the young babyboomers, like John, were more than ready for the kind of unconventional intimacy with nature he sang about so effortlessly and so elegantly. From "Sunshine On My Shoulders" to "I Guess He'd Rather Be In Colorado", Denver's song soar in their description of the beauties of the natural life and in being close to the "great wide-open'.
Denver also does an unusually good cover of "Let It Be" by Lennon and McCartney, and also serves up a later hit, "My Sweet Lady'. He really surprises with his terrific cover of "Fire And Rain", and he is the only one besides Tom Rush that I have ever heard do a good cover of a James Taylor song. Indeed, the simple and well arranged acoustic blast of infectious energy and sweet simplicity that was John Denver is here in spades, whether it be in original songs like "Country Roads" or with covers of others' work, the kid who had adopted the majesty of Colorado for his setting and his inspiration sings simply, sentimentally, and superbly about the simple pleasures and undying verities of a homespun and simple life well lived.
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Format: Audio CD
My exposure to this album came "back in the day;" in my boyhood, somewhere around 1973, when a second-hand vinyl LP came into my possession. By this time John Denver had become quite popular, so some of the songs were already familiar. It was the lessr-knowns that grabbed my heartstrings then, and still hold onto them today.

The cover of James Taylor's "Fire and Rain" leaves the original standing in the shade. The stripped down arrangement and pregnant pauses invest the tune with a raw emotional power that the original's production job seemed to lack in comparison. The song has stayed with me and held me all of these years. As a musician myself, I revisit it from time to time, usually when I'm feeling down, for the second verse is a prayer. Certainly, there aer other highlights to this album, but this one's the high-water mark for me.

Denver's original songs, whether solo or accompanied by group arrangements, reflect a generational idealism in song, and may be seen as inspiraton for the outdoor lifestyle and conservation movements; "Guess He'd Rather Be in Colorado" would be my case-in-point. The pacifist movement was also represented on this album in a rather unusual fashion with the spoken-word, "The Box," a powerful anti-war poem that is all-too-applicable in today's times. The acoustic cover of the Beatles' "Let It Be" also stands out. While not eclipsing the original, it is nonetheless a testament to what John Denver was all about, and it fits perfectly with the rest of the material.

"My Sweet Lady" is one of the most tender love songs you'll ever hear. The title track deserved more than it got, in terms of being a hit.
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Format: Audio CD
This is possibly the best John Denver CD available. It's simple, acoustic and avoids the overproduction of his later works. His rendition of James Taylor's "Fire And Rain" is really a treat and his acoustic version of "Let It Be" is wonderful. If you like Denver's early works, this is the CD to get.
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Format: Audio CD
Many years ago I was at a very low point in my life..contemplating suicide...I had a weapon and laid down on the bed..for some reason I turned the clock radio on...this song by John Denver Poems Prayers and Promises started playing....I didnt want to die anymore. It truely saved my life.
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Format: Audio CD
This CD was to be the last in a 4 album RCA record deal for John in 1971. The previous 3 albums did not sell. He was at the end of his rope. This CD is a treasure because it expresses the desperation that he was feeling at the time. He would never sing like this on his next 30 albums. He does a cover of "Let It Be" that is the most moving I have ever heard. He also covers James Taylor nicely with "fire and Rain". It also includes the country hit "Take Me Home Country Roads" which is the song the radio stations played immensely when this album was released. Because of that country radio airplay, RCA signed him to a new deal and saved his career. This was ironic because the country music scene never embraced John as a true country artist. But the airplay led to a bevy of pop hits that propelled him from semi-successful folk-artist to a veritable pop phenomenon. Rocky Mountain High, Calypso, Annie's Song, Back Home Again, Thank God I'm a Country Boy, I'm Sorry, and others might never have been heard if it weren't for this critical CD. The title track "Poems, Prayers, and Promises" is one of my favorites cuts of this song later re-recorded for his Greatest Hits Vol.I. then again on his live album "An Evening With John Denver". For those of you who are interested in discovering what kind of artist and songwriter John Denver was in late 1960's and early 1970's before his pop explosion which alienated many of his early folk fans, buy this CD. It is unique and raw..all acoustic guitar with minimal help from any kind of effects. 16 years later, it is still sitting in my CD player!
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