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These Four Walls [CD]

Shawn ColvinAudio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)

Price: $10.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 13 Songs, 2006 $11.49  
Audio CD, CD, 2006 $10.99  

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

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Fill Me Up 3:39$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. These Four Walls 2:57$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Tuff Kid 3:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Summer Dress 4:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Cinnamon Road 3:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Venetian Blue 3:45$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. The Bird 3:09$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. I'm Gone 2:53$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Let It Slide 4:17$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Even Here We Are 2:44$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. So Good to See You 3:43$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. That Don't Worry Me Now 3:40$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. Words 2:29$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 12, 2006)
  • Original Release Date: 2006
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #123,393 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

This is Shawn Colvin's first album since 2001's A Whole New You. On These Four Walls, Colvin displays an easy-going sophistication and an appealingly grown-up spin on both her own evocative songs and the smartly-chosen covers she interprets.

Shawn Colvin's fans are a dedicated and patient lot. They've had to be, to have waited five years for this new release and nearly six for the one before it. But she rewards the faithful with gems every time, and These Four Walls is no exception. Despite a label change to the more musically adventurous Nonesuch, after having been associated with Columbia since 1989, this is a typically low-key yet beautifully constructed set. Colvin again works with producer/songwriter John Leventhal, her musical collaborator for the past quarter-century, and that long-standing partnership pays off with 11 superbly crafted originals. Colvin's breathy voice conveys the emotion, yearning, sadness, and even the occasional joy and hope behind the melodies. As producer, Leventhal colors these songs with subtle textures, adding organ, brushed drums, and layered electric and acoustic guitars to bolster but never overwhelm the songs or Colvin's delicate yet defined vocals. It's a clean but never-slick sound, with enough edge and dynamics to reflect the nuances in the lyrics. Covers of the obscure Paul Westerberg track "Even Here We Are" and the Bee Gees' "Words"--the latter sounding like a demo, with just acoustic guitar, spare bass, and sparse piano--illuminate additional details in her approach. They round out one of Colvin's finest, most honest, and poignant collections. It's an album worth the extended wait. --Hal Horowitz

Recommended Shawn Colvin

Polaroids: A Greatest Hits Collection

Fat City

A Few Small Repairs

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Always worth the wait January 29, 2007
Format:Audio CD
Perhaps the lack of recognition given Shawn Colvin is due to her drawn out release schedule. With two albums in 11 years, she could give Boston a run for Tom Sholz's money. Maybe if she'd been a bit more prolific, she'd be recognized as the terrific artist she truly is. But then again, as each CD is a knock-out collection without filler tracks, maybe it's just as well. The appreciative audience of fans (like me) that snap up the CD's as they trickle out are always assured of only the finest quality music.

"These Four Walls" is no exception. Eleven new songs and two covers, there isn't a wasted note or overplayed stanza on the entire CD. Songs of lover's resignation (the beautiful title song) and bitter rants like "Tuff Kid" are interlaced with love songs like "Let It Slide" and her cover of the Bee Gees' "Words." Producer and co-writer John Leventhal does for Colvin what he has done over numerous times through the years: frames Colvin letter perfectly. It is the same kind of empathic touch he gave to Rosanne Cash on "Black Cadillac."

The show, however, belongs to Colvin. Her delivery of these songs is unflinchingly honest, and had this been the time of hits for the likes of her, Natalie Merchant and Suzanne Vega in the late 80's, the audience for this would be clamoring for "Summer Dress" and "Venetian Blue" on the radio or even VH1. But alas, Shawn Colvin's "These Four Walls" will suffer the commercial fate of more discriminatory buyers, like the folks who are probably reading this review. So what are you waiting for?

One of the best of 2006.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Five years was worth the wait. Shawn Colvin returns to form after the uneven "Whole New You." The reason, amazing songwriting. "Summer Dresses" is the highlight among a great collection of songs. The lyrics are subtle and moving--she doesn't strain to write poetically. The production is also more restrained than it was on her last effort, never overpowering the heartfelt, personal, and evocative vocal performance.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Like a fine wine, Shawn just keeps getting better! February 6, 2007
Format:Audio CD
I have been a fan of Shawn's music since her break out hit Sunny Came Home. Although I really love that song, there are also some other songs that are even better than Sunny Came Home in my opinion. These Four Walls showcases Shawn's remarkable voice and songwriting ability. Tuching, poignant and bittersweet, this album has a song for every mood. The title track is beautifully sung, and the guitar is just haunting. Venetian Blue, The Bird, I'm Gone and Let It Slide are powerful emotional testaments to the power of Shawn's songwriting and John Leventhal's producing prowess. Shawn's cover of the BG's Words and Paul Westerberg's Even Here We Are showcase another side of Colvin's talents. She interprets covers like no other! My favorite tracks are Tough Kid, The Bird, Cinnamon Road, These Four Walls and Let It Slide. Patty Griffin and Marc Cohn's contributions to Cinnamon Road are amazing, and Teddy Thompson (son of singer/songwriter Richard Thompson) make Let It Slide wonderfully expressive. If you are a fan or just a newcomer, you won't be disapponted! I have listened to this album numerous times and find something different each time. Definitely worth the wait!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
I bought this album with few expectations. Previously I liked Shawn Colvin in doses. I have an appreciation for a few cuts off "A Few Small Repairs." On days that call for hot chocolate, a pile of blankets, and a good book I could listen to "Shotgun Down the Avalanche" until the track wears out. Her cover of "Everything She Does is Magic" is a guilty pleasure.

With this album Colvin has risen to the occasion. It has seeped into the corners of my soul and moved me. It reflects a level of craftsmanship that is rare. Her lyrics are smart, self aware, and honest in a way that is all her own while being reminiscent of Joni Mitchell at her best. This is a must have especially for songs such as "These Four Walls", "Venetian Blue", I'm Gone", "Summer Dress", "So Good to See You", and "The Bird." It inspires me that Colvin has done justice to her talent and that we all get to enjoy the result.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's folk music. Ok? August 23, 2007
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
If you are a Shawn Colvin fan this is a must have CD. The first track, Fill Me Up, has a tempo reminicent of Sunny came home. I like the dark feel to the title track and Summer Dress. Cinnamon Road is another song that is well done.

Shawn's music just feels right to me. She has a folk rock style with a little edge. If you have Born in the USA stuck back in your collection somewhere pull it out and listen to My Hometown. Shawn's songs are like that. They are about life and the truth. She tells it like it is,(Let it slide, Tuff kid). The whole album takes me back to some of the good artists of the 70's. She does a good cover of the Bee Gees Words. Other songs remind me of artists like Carole King, James Taylor, and even Bob Seeger. If you like folk and want to sit back, have a beer, and listen to what a great artist has to say you wont be disappointed. If you like Brittney or Shania and want your music sugar coated keep looking...
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Colvin To The Core September 16, 2006
Format:Audio CD
The posted Amazon editor review pretty much hits the mark in regard to Shawn Colvin's new CD "These Four Walls." It's been a long wait since "Whole New You" but this CD was worth the wait. Colvin remains an astute storyteller and her melodies and vocal delivery again shine (lyrics like "We never lived, we just survived" from "Summer Dress" show how she can hit you emotionally with simple words - - which is, to me, the hallmark of a really good songwriter). Every song here is strong with "Summer Dress" and "Venetian Blue" being standouts. If you enjoy "A Few Small Repairs" and "Whole New You" you will love this CD. John Leventhal again provides great production and musical prowess - - let's hope they always work together. Heart's Nancy Wilson recently said in an interview that she is "Colvin to the core." Listen to "These Four Walls" and you'll be to!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars love it
I just love love Shawn Colvin. She is the best. Could not get enough. She is fabulous artist, listen all of the time
Published 8 months ago by Mary J Drake
5.0 out of 5 stars As fresh as daily milk
Shawn Colvin is up there with Rickie Lee Jones and is simply one of the best in the singer songwriter vault. Read more
Published on January 20, 2011 by BAZZA
5.0 out of 5 stars Gets even better the more you listen
And I am probably on my 100th listening by now. I can't quite fathom the (very few) poor reviews which use words like flat, shallow and whiny. Read more
Published on November 8, 2010 by Abigail99
5.0 out of 5 stars Great cd
Shawn Colvin has returned and she is still as impressive as ever! The songs on this cd are reminiscent of her older stuff. GREAT, full of introspection and easily related to. Read more
Published on May 27, 2010 by Lolita Browning
5.0 out of 5 stars Wearing this one out it's so good
I love this album and have been playing it daily. Great lyrics, catchy tunes, a little melancholy - perfect for winter!
Published on December 21, 2009 by Linda Kate
1.0 out of 5 stars Flat, a disappointment
I'm crazy about Shawn Colvin. She shares what's in her heart with us, both the pleasure and the pain. Her music is honest and passionate. Read more
Published on April 10, 2009 by Paul in Pittsburgh
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Shawn
I've been a Shawn Colvin fan since "Steady On" was released, and I saw her perform live eight times during the nineties. Read more
Published on March 13, 2009 by S. Bowman
3.0 out of 5 stars Willing artist, shallow material
Colvin's seduction lies in her voice, at once oddly piquant and straight-faced, a twang that nicely embodies her cast of yearners, scrappers and outcasts. Read more
Published on December 1, 2008 by Ennis Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars Fills you up
Shawn Colvin has always been a rather charming artist of smart sentiments and pleasant arrangements - it leads to lovely, not especially challenging songs, and a general feeling of... Read more
Published on April 21, 2008 by E. Kutinsky
2.0 out of 5 stars Not even close!
Not even close to "Cover Girl" or "Steady On". The songs on this album all sound the same. And this album is all studio work. Read more
Published on April 15, 2008 by M. Vircsik
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