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44 of 48 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 90% fantastic
This is Carly Simon's best pop album in many a year. Perhaps the reason Carly is not acknowledged as a "rock and roll legend" is because of her dual career with earlier albums like the immediate predecessor "Film Noir" or "My Romance" and "Torch."
This diversity keeps many from being big fans, I feel.
As others have...
Published on May 30, 2000 by Coy McCoy

versus
46 of 59 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Carly flounders...
Carly's cd,"The Bedroom Tapes" is not an easy listen for me,therefore it's not easy to review it. I still remain one of her biggest supporters,but this time out I am disappointed. For me the only stand out is "In Honor Of You(George)". This is pure Simon.Weaving an old standard into something completely new. There is a line about looking for a hook...
Published on May 22, 2000


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44 of 48 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 90% fantastic, May 30, 2000
By 
Coy McCoy (Oklahoma City, OK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
This is Carly Simon's best pop album in many a year. Perhaps the reason Carly is not acknowledged as a "rock and roll legend" is because of her dual career with earlier albums like the immediate predecessor "Film Noir" or "My Romance" and "Torch."
This diversity keeps many from being big fans, I feel.
As others have said, her voice is better than it's ever been. Her music is solid and fantastic. Her lyrics are insightful and clever as always.
Best tracks muscially: "Our Affair," "So Many Stars," "Actress," "We Your Dearest Friends."
Best tracks lyrically: "So Many Stars," "Big Dumb Guy," "Scar," "Cross the River," "Actress," "We Your Dearest Friends."
Songs I could do without if I had to leave some: "I Forget," "Whatever Became of Her," "In Honor of You (George)." (After several listenings, I can't even play these in my head).
This CD is much better than expected. It's better than 1994's "Letters Never Sent" or even such commercial favorites as "Coming Around Again," in my opinion.
It's her best work since the early '80s.
I am surprised, pleased, and not at all embarrassed to be a very big fan.
She's come a long way since "They're puttin' out too many phonograph records/I think I'm gonna have a baby."
Now she just wants to kick away her mouse pad and greet a "big dumb guy."
The emotional insecurity of her early work is thankfully absent, as is the overt eroticism we have seen from her.
"The Bedroom Tapes" (a reference to the empty-nested daughter bedroom where she wrote the songs) as a title is a playful acknowledgment of her sexy image, no doubt, but she's toned it down, while keeping it romantic in nature.
All in all, this is a Carly Simon must for long-time fans and a pretty good listen for even the casual music fan. This should be a nice comeback saleswise. Out of the box (debuting Billboard #90), to this end it's looking promising.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Carly At Her Most Thought Provoking..........And Challenging, June 2, 2000
By 
Jef Fazekas (Newport Beach, California United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
Is "The Bedroom Tapes" one of Carly Simon's best albums? No. Is it one of her most important? Without a doubt. After just a listen or two, it's very clear that this is an album Carly had to make. While this CD is lacking the smoothness, fullness and sense of continuity of 1990's "Have You Seen Me Lately?" and 1994's "Letters Never Sent" (two albums that, in my opinion, represent the perfect blend of Carly's roots and all she's learned over the last thirty years), there is a sense of daring and honesty to "The Basement Tapes". Carly has never sounded more naked or raw. While there's been a lot of talk about Carly's breast cancer and writer's block, "Tapes" also comes across as a work from an artist who's standing on the edge, wanting - and needing - to push the envelope. So what works on "The Bedroom Tapes"? Well, there's "Our Affair", the CD's sly, sultry opening track which, in a perfect world, would be Carly's next smash hit. Then there's the wistful "So Many Stars" and the spunky "Actress". And we can't forget the percolating "Cross The River", on which Carly almost - gasp! - raps! Finally, there's the powerful "Scar" and "We Your Dearest Friends", a song that will probably get tongues wagging more than they have since "You're So Vain". And what doesn't work? Well, there's the forced, almost contrived lyrics (never thought I would say that about Carly!) of "Big Dumb Guy" (though, I must admit, "Guy"'s melody is so intoxicating I find myself being drawn into the song more and more with each listen!) and the less-than-satisfactory feeling that the album's closer "In Honour Of You(George)" leaves you with. But these are minor complaints. The truth of the matter is "The Bedroom Tapes" is one of the most captivating albums of 2000. While not an easy, casual listen - you have to really pay attention to this CD - it's a release full of rewards, by an artist who continues to grow and amaze. Carly Simon has been my favorite solo artist for almost thirty years now. "The Bedroom Tapes" only helps to enhance that feeling.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A poignant and profound masterpiece, May 17, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
This is an astonishingly passionate and personal CD with consistently great songwriting by Carly Simon throughout. While she turns her witty and wry focus on some terrific "characters" as in "Actress", "Cross the River", and the lovely "What Ever Became of Her", the songs about herself are deep and revealing -- and liberating -- and as resonant as anything she has ever done. All the familiar rock/pop/folk sensibilites are there in "Our Affair", "So Many Stars" and "Big Dumb Guy" -- great catchy tracks that many fans will love (as I do too), but it is the achingly painful and gorgeous songs "Scar", "I Forget" and "In Honour of You (George)" that will stop you in your tracks. This is not a "singles" album" but a CD that demands your complete attention from beginning to end. Her singing is glorious -- emotional, raw and passionate. The songs she sings are her most fully realized and personal ever. Without any reference to current trends, it's like a breath of fresh air. It's real -- never synthetic. It immediately ranks as one of the most intimate and revealing singer/songwriter albums ever.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Carly's best album in years, May 16, 2000
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
This new Carly Simon album is her best effort in years, probably as strong as "Boys In The Trees" back in 1978. The album starts with the Sheryl Crow-like "Our Affair" (Carly can still rock, and she does it well) but she's never as good as when she sings folk-rock ballads with moving lyrics and strong melodies ("Scar", "Whatever Became Of Her", "Actress"). A must-have !
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So Many Stars, May 18, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
Carly Simon quite possibly puts forth her best effort ever on "The Bedroom Tapes," as she wrote almost all the material, performs almost all the vocals, plays almost all the instruments, and did almost all the production herself. It's obvious that this album was a labor of love. As usual, she opens up to her listeners, especially in the beautiful and confessional tracks "Scar" and "I Forget." Of course, Carly has fun as well, with "Our Affair," "Big Dumb Guy," and "Actress." "So Many Stars" is also a standout, and its title is fitting because Carly shines in so many ways on this album. Whatever you love about Carly, you will find it on "The Bedroom Tapes."
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A BEAUTIFUL PIECE OF WORK! A LANDMARK IN CARLY'S CAREER!, June 1, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
Carly Simon's music has always been the soundtrack to the passages of my life. She always seemed to know what I was experiencing and how to sort it out for me in her music. She ushered me from girl to woman and then again into the bewildering territory of "wife".
This album is there for me again -- it's there for any woman who challenges her own character and questions why the world keeps throwing her punches. I "got it" and heard it all clearly the first time around. I've been playing this CD over and over again - each time I hear it I find something new to mull over.
Although "Scar" is about Carly's victory over breast cancer (and to me, the most important song on the album), it can surely move you back through any kind of scar life has dealt you, and then bring you home with the victory of having survived it.
"So Many Stars" always brings tears to my eyes. Although it's about losing a love, it could also make you realize just how much for granted you might be taking the love in your life now.
While "Actress" is about an actress, it hits me hard with regard to my own little role-playing games and if you listen closely, you'll hear about yourself in there, too.
You'll also hear about yourself on "We, Your Dearest Friends". (We don't always behave like "friends" to our friends, do we?)
Carly is singing about women. This very special collection of work acknowledges us as individual women and then again as the complicated gender we belong to. I believe this album will end up being one of the absolute best of her career.
If you like Carly, and/or if you're a woman who's in a perpetual struggle with an ever-evolving identity, THIS CD IS A MUST.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top Of Her Form, May 16, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
This is Carly Simon at the top of her form. She ranges from the wonderfully ironic "Actress" to the nearly sardonic, "We Your Dearest Friends". The stunning and deeply insightful cut "Scar" is without equal in recent musical history and the sheer inventiveness and beauty of "George" is a unique ode to another great artist. "Big Dumb Guy" is so timely and hip that it surprises and reveals our most hidden sense of what is happening to us all. Her voice and the overall production are sensational. I would offer a warning to anyone reading the Amazon reviewer's comments that the only one who seems to be "going through the motions" is him. To use such a tired cliche about one of our great American artists is an insult to Carly Simon and the listening public who both deserve better than that comment indicates.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Carly Simon/Raw, July 3, 2000
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
I've been following her career since 1971. This record, is, I think, her most honest and most revealing -- the work of a mature woman who has finally reached some peace around so many of the issues she was trying to work out in her earlier records. Carly's ALWAYS lived her life through her songs -- we've followed her thru dating, marriage, motherhood, breaking up, having affairs, sorting through the deaths of both her parents (Hello Big Man, to me, is still one of her most powerful songs, about her Dad). Now, she's working through issues relating to her older years, her bout with cancer, and wondering if "maybe I never loved you" about all those guys she lusted after in her earlier albums. One critic commented that "We Your Derest Friends" was about her critics -- he obviously doesn't know her very well. I suspect this is a response to the so-called "friends" who bailed on her thru her illness and writers block. And for all those people who think "BIG DUMB GUY" is a metaphor? I don't believe it. I think this is a song about having an affair (or trying to -- "mostly he's floppy" sounds like her paramour had a little trouble) with some big shot from the computer world.
Of course, "SCAR" is vintage Carly who, after it all, is humble, a little triste, and yet filled with spirituality and the hope that if we all just can "follow our scars" we will learn and grow and be wise.
Rock on, Carly. Your emotional honesty and daring to take chances lyrically and tell the truth is what's kept me comign back since I was 11.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another classic from one of rock's finest, May 21, 2000
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
Twenty-nine years into anyone's career at anything and it stands to reason that casual slip-ups can be made. Carly Simon, however, displays her usual sure-footedness and flair on "The Bedroom Tapes." Conceived and created in the comfort of her own home, the album benefits from a rough-around-the-edges sound that can only be created when an artist is in their element, hanging loose and letting the creativity flow naturally. (A stylistic kindred spirit would be Sheryl Crow's "Tuesday Night Music Club.")
While the production may sound a little more like sitting in on a jam session than your basic Carly Simon record, one thing that hasn't changed is her gift for songwriting. "Our Affair" rocks with a gentle insistence and sultry lyrics ("don't you feel like you're coming down with something/some big fancy flu/don't you feel like you're coming down with me/and it don't get sicker than you"), "So Many Stars" finds our heroine trying to go about an ordinary day while plagued with the end of another love affair, and "Whatever Became of Her" is a bittersweet ode to both youth and love gone by.
"Cross the River" features a lightly funky musical backdrop underneath the sort of touching, storytelling lyric Simon afficiandos have come to expect -not to mention one of her best choruses- and "We Your Dearest Friends," a cunning, thinly-disguised satire of music critics, benefits not only from a tasty, Beatlesque verse but the ingenious pairing of the catchiest of hooks with the most biting of lyrics ("we're gathered here in faithlessness/to undermine your happiness"). The end result is priceless and one of Simon's finest moments.
What will no doubt move longtime fans are the songs that were fairly obviously created in response to the singer's recent bout with cancer: "Scar" finds strength in adversity, "I Forget" is a touching retreat into fear and uncertainty, and "I'm Really the Kind" shows that finding either total strength or utter helplessness depends entirely on what day it is. In the hands of a lesser craftsman, such explorations could drown in self-pity; luckily Simon hasn't lost her ability to not only recognize but embrace the fears and uncertainty that even our bravest moments can breed.
The only moment that doesn't quite work is the album's closer, "In Honor of You (George)." Simon is understandably fascinated with an George Gershwin, and in theory a musical letter to him is a smart and sweet idea. However, the only musical hook that stands out is Gershwin's own "Embraceable You," sung here in sporadic passages...a simple cover of that song may have been more fitting. Hitting the target dead-on, however, is "Big Dumb Guy," a bluesy rock number with a sleazy groove and a clever Internet-themed lyric that could mean a number of things: is it a satire for the "tech-heads" that are brilliant with technology but socially disabled? Is it poking fun at the technology that we've been led to believe can make our lives so much better? Either way, Simon has never sounded sexier. (Warning: her growl at the end of "get it on, get it on, get it on BAY-bay" isn't recommended for those not fond of chills.)
"The Bedroom Tapes" trumps the other also-fabulous mid-life releases of recent years (looser than James Taylor's "Hourglass," more varied than Joni Mitchell's "Taming the Tiger"), but what's most impressive is, twenty-nine years into her major-label recording career, Carly Simon still has a knack for hooks that soar, grooves that fit, and lyrics that touch. The only way to find fault with "The Bedroom Tapes" is if you weren't a Carly Simon fan in the first place.
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46 of 59 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Carly flounders..., May 22, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Bedroom Tapes (Audio CD)
Carly's cd,"The Bedroom Tapes" is not an easy listen for me,therefore it's not easy to review it. I still remain one of her biggest supporters,but this time out I am disappointed. For me the only stand out is "In Honor Of You(George)". This is pure Simon.Weaving an old standard into something completely new. There is a line about looking for a hook. Well that is what I was looking for in TBT. No song is really sing-a-longable. "Our Affair" comes closet.It's a nice uptempo pop rocker."Big Dumb Guy" is humorous(I find Carly at her best when her wit weaves a song "Floundering","Da Bat") but the last minute is painstaking as she tries to be too cute and too hip. The main problems with this cd are the songs are too long, and too many tempo changes. It worked on "Memorial Day",but not on this cd. The biggest compliment goes to the voice. Carly never sounded better. Too bad the material just isn't up to her standards. This is definitely a mixed review. My head says I do not like TBT, but heart says I like it,just for the sheer pleasure of Carly's voice. In the meantime,check this cd out,but do not forget Carly at her best,i.e.; "Spy",Boys In The Trees",Have You Seen Me Lately","Coming Around Again","Anticipation",and the monster album "No Secrets".
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The Bedroom Tapes
The Bedroom Tapes by Carly Simon (Audio CD - 2000)
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