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Songs From The Movies


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Audio CD, April 14, 2014
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Songs From The Movies + Ashes And Roses + The Age of Miracles
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Editorial Reviews

2014 release from the acclaimed singer/songwriter. Songs From The Movie, with its compelling orchestral reinvention of classic Mary Chapin Carpenter compositions, is an artistic landmark for Mary Chapin. Collaborating with composer/arranger and producer Vince Mendoza and working once again with co-producer Matt Rollings, the album harkens to her love of classic film and symphonic music. Citing as inspiration such seminal film composers as Elmer Bernstein and Thomas Newman, and contemporary symphonic composers like Tobias Picker and Morten Lauridsen, Carpenter had long imagined this project but it wasn't until she had the chance to work with Mendoza that it came to fruition. The result reprises 10 of Carpenter's songs in Mendoza's distinctively beautiful and cinematic arrangements to give the listener the continuum of a film soundtrack, albeit an imaginary one.

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
listen  1. On And On It Goes 4:24$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  2. I Am A Town 4:58$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Between Here And Gone 5:03$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Ideas Are Like Stars 4:14$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  5. The Dreaming Road 5:44$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Only A Dream 5:53$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Come On Come On 5:27$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Mrs. Hemingway 6:17$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Where Time Stands Still 3:43$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen10. Goodnight America 6:07$1.29  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 14, 2014)
  • Original Release Date: 2014
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Zoe
  • ASIN: B00G34XOQ4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (93 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,299 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By DVD buff on January 14, 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Words cannot express how much I love this album. Everything about it is wonderful. Admittedly, I'm a huge Mary Chapin Carpenter fan, and there's little she could do that I wouldn't love, but this album really exceeded even my greatest hopes.

Like Nanci Griffith's DUST BOWN SYMPHONY or Dougie MacLean's WITH STRINGS, this is an album of revisited songs. Not "greatest hits," but more likely songs that seemed to lend themselves to the orchestral arrangements. The song selection is only one of the great things about this album, though.

These are entirely new recordings. Arrangements for full orchestra have been made for each song, and it's the full orchestral sound that you get -- she's not accompanied by her usual band here. Given that the title of the album is SONGS FROM THE MOVIE, the end product sounds very much like a great motion picture score. The arrangements are full and lush, playing a larger role than just that of a backing track. We even get a chorus as backing vocalists on one track ("Ideas Are Like Stars").

For me, one of the things that makes this album so special is the way it takes these songs and lifts them beyond genre. Songs that might have originally been labeled "folk" or "country" become timeless standards. "Where Time Stands Still" is such a fitting song for this album, because this album seems to exist in a place outside of time.

If I had to make a criticism of the album, it would only be that the album is too short. Sure, it's almost 52 minutes long, but it only left me wanting more. A couple of original songs, not recorded before, would have been lovely, but I can't complain about anything that's here.

It's wonderful to have an artist step outside their usual box every once in a while, and this album is a thrilling addition to the Mary Chapin Carpenter catalog.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By jh on January 17, 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I understand the impulse to play with arrangements to find different dimensions of a song. While this may be an interesting experiment, the results can be mixed. SONGS FROM THE MOVIE includes many of my favorite songs by this masterful composer. But, I feel the orchestral arrangements miss some of the most valuable and unique elements of Mary Chapin Carpenter's songs. I have always been amazed by the sense of intimacy and emotional immediacy captured in her recordings. I feel the orchestral arrangements produce "artificial" swells of sound to indicate emotional tides. The orcehstra became superfluous, distracting from the vocal performance.The subtly of the lyrics is washed asunder. The renderings of the lyrics are diluted. Only two of these tracks "worked " for me, COME ON COME ON and GOODNIGHT AMERICA. This recording has left me wanting new material from this amazing songwriter. Less is More.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Veatscake on January 16, 2014
Format: Audio CD
I've been a MCC fan since State of the Heart and have all of her primary recordings (none of the compilations). If I were going to create my own playlist of favorite songs, none of these would be on it, so keep that in mind when you read this review. When I saw this was coming out, I was lukewarm about it, but bought it out of curiosity. I put the songs from Songs From the Movie in a playlist, side by side with the original versions and listened to them sequentially (orchestra version of On and On It Goes, then original version, etc). My conclusions are:
Neither Mrs. Hemingway nor Where Time Stands Still speak to me--either version.
Songs I prefer in their original form are: I Am A Town (she sings it like she means it; the new version is flat), Only A Dream, and Goodnight America.
Songs I like better with the orchestra are: Dreaming Road, On and On It Goes, and Ideas Are Like Stars.
I like both versions of Between Here and Gone.
Dreaming Road is my favorite cut on Songs From the Movie and shows what an inspired pairing of MCC's songs and Vince Mendoza's arrangements can achieve. It's unfortunate that only a couple other songs on the recording capture this same magic. If these 10 songs are already your favorites, you will probably like this recording. If, like me, they aren't, I can't see much reason to purchase the entire recording.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Donald E. Gilliland on April 6, 2014
Format: Audio CD
I've been a fan of Mary Chapin Carpenter's music for many years. I actually think she's gotten better with age, ranking recent albums such as "The Age of Miracles" and "Ashes and Roses" as among her finest works.

Thus, I was excited to see a "new" album come out recently, and one that was actually for sale at a shop here in Bangkok where I live. I bought it impulsively without realizing that these songs were "orchestral" versions of tunes she's already recorded. Hmm, not exactly a musical style that I enjoy listening to, but it's MCC, so I gave it a chance.

After a dozen listens, I think I'm about ready to shelve this one. Frankly, I find these orchestral arrangements just plain annoying. Mary's voice still sounds warm and radiant, but these versions just aren't moving me. Obviously, many reviewers find beauty in these new arrangements, but I find this a struggle to get into. I would much prefer acoustic, stripped-down versions of these songs. This album certainly isn't for everyone, especially those listeners like me who are used to more folk and country styling in her tunes.
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