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AM/FM

4.1 out of 5 stars 133 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

2012 album from the actress/vocalist. AM/FM is an intimate, elegant and beautifully sung collection of classics from the '60s and '70s that together, make up the soundtrack to her life. "The song sequence on the album tells a story of a very innocent, idealized version of love in the `AM' section, before it shifts to the `FM' section and becomes more about the disillusionment that happens after you've had some heartbreaks," Rita says. The album contains 14 tracks, carefully curated by Wilson along with her producer Fred Mollin. The album is essentially divided into two sections. The first half, "AM," features songs from the '60s that Wilson remembers singing along to on AM radio while riding in the back seat of her parents' car and that recall the "lovely innocence and hopefulness of the time": "All I Have To Do Is Dream," "Never My Love" and "Cherish," "Come See About Me," "Angel Of The Morning," "Walking In The Rain," "Wichita Lineman" (written by Jimmy Webb who also plays piano on Wilson's version), and "You Were On My Mind."

Review

New York Times
Published: May 14th, 2012
AM/FM (Decca)

AM/FM, the debut album of Rita Wilson (Mrs. Tom Hanks), is a charming, nostalgic throwback to the soft rock of Los Angeles in the 1970s and early 80s, when the music conjured a posthippie romantic lotus land. In the early 70s Ms. Wilson, now 55, was attending Hollywood High School. She was a decade younger than musicians like Jimmy Webb and Jackson Browne, who appear on her album, along with Sheryl Crow and Faith Hill. On AM/FM, a gentler echo of the sound and style of albums by Linda Ronstadt, Karla Bonoff and Nicolette Larson, Ms. Wilson sings 14 personal favorites, most of them hits from the 1960s and 70s.

An unpretentious singer with a sweet, steady voice, Ms. Wilson lacks the forceful delivery of Ms. Ronstadt but imbues everything she touches with the kind of plaintive, unvarnished simplicity and understatement associated with Alison Krauss, who has a purer voice. There is not a forced or flat note. Fred Mollin s production, with its spare arrangements and creamy strings, is in perfect step with Ms. Wilson s appealing vocals.

The opening cut, All I Have to Do Is Dream, sung with the rocker Chris Cornell, establishes the album s mood of fond remembrance. The songs from the late 50s and 60s, like Walking in the Rain, Never My Love and Come See About Me, tend to be hopeful and innocent, and those from the 70s, like Faithless Love and Good Time Charlie s Got the Blues, more careworn and disillusioned.

The best point of comparison between then and now is the classic Eric Kaz and Libby Titus torch song Love Has No Pride, which was memorably recorded by Ms. Ronstadt, who wailed it; Bonnie Raitt, who toughened it up; and Rita Coolidge, who crooned it. Ms. Wilson s version is quieter and less fraught than its forerunners and distills the album s retrospective attitude of looking back from a point of grown-up serenity. The view is lovely.

Stephen Holden --The New York Times

By James Hunter
May 8, 2012

Sensuous U.S. radio hits from the Sixties and Seventies have a surprisingly able proponent in Rita Wilson, the L.A.-born actress and producer who debuts as a singer with this collection. Helped by Sheryl Crow ("Angel of the Morning," "Will You Love Me Tomorrow?"), Chris Cornell ("All I Have to Do Is Dream"), Faith Hill ("Love Has No Pride") and others, Wilson renews Watergate-era gems with an expressive denim-and-suede soprano; on "Good Time Charlie's Got the Blues," she and Jackson Browne sing a song from 1971, but the stripped-down, bossa-nova-flavored arrangement, like much of AM/FM itself, feels timeless. --Rolling Stone Magazine
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 8, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Verve
  • ASIN: B007701SM0
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (133 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,156 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
Ok.

Is this a vanity project? Yes.

Would Ms. Wilson had gotten a Decca recording if she wasn't Rita Wilson and Mrs. Tom Hanks? No.

Is this a great album. No.

What it is is very smooth and very enjoyable which I certainly cannot say about 90% of the tripe that passes for pop music today.

I think what the recording is really suffering from for me is the Ms. Wilson is doing some of my all-time favorite songs. The result is I'm mentally comparing her version to Linda Ronstadt, Carole King, Dave Loggins and others who over the years are seared into my brain.

What it is not suffering from is sucking.

She can sing well enough. It reminds me of a friend with a very nice voice who was able to get some of music's great studio musicians and writers to help them out with a recording.

I really like this recording and would recommend it to anyone who wants some nice easy music with a little edge thrown in here and there. As a matter of fact I think the record would be a lot better if there was a little more rawness to it.

I liked a lot of the songs and while I was listening to the recording on iTunes gave every song a 3 or 4 star rating except ironically the one song not included except as an Amazon add on "Prisoner In Disguise". It got 5 stars.

This is one of my favorite Linda Ronstadt/J.D. Souther songs. I think Ms. Wilson did a haunting and noteworthy version. I loved this cut.

Buy it.
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Rita can rock. Saw her perform her debut album AM/FM at the Geffen Playhouse Actors Fund benefit in Westwood last night. Spent a delightful day today with her renditions of, "Angel of the Morning", "Love Has No Pride", "Never My Love" and her tribute for David Geffen, "I Can't Make You Love Me" running through my head. Rita Wilson really is a triple threat performer - she can act, dance and sing. Best evening out in a very long time. If you have a chance to see her perform - don't miss it. Yes, she married Tom Hanks, and maybe that proves he can be lucky and good. Don't underestimate her chops - listen to the samples and decide for yourself.
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Long a star of screen and stage, the latter being a showcase for her vocal talents, Rita Wilson launched a music career in 2012 with "AM/FM", a collection of pop classics from the '60s and '70s.
The concept is clever: half the songs are tunes familiar from heavy rotation on AM stations, half are songs by singer/songwriters who would have been heard on FM stations.
The record doesn't quite cleave neatly in two -- some AM tunes are paired up -- but the conceit does give AM/FM thematic range even when the album is pitched firmly in the middle of the road.
All the arrangements are sweet and intimate -- even when the tempo picks up, as it does on "You Were on My Mind", no sweat is broken -- and nothing is distracting from Wilson's voice, which perhaps is good as she's not a forceful singer.
She takes thing easy, a suitable choice for an album whose primary purpose is sepia-toned nostalgia.
Surely this will be appealing for fellow Baby Boomers looking back fondly on the golden age of rock & roll radio, but the question remains, if you're pining for the past wouldn't it just be better to put on the original hits?
S. T. Erlewine

Favourite tracks: "All I Have To Do Is Dream", "Come See About Me", "Angel Of The Morning", and "Wichita Limeman".
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I've always loved Rita Wilson and bought this CD just out of curiosity mainly. I was shocked when I heard how beautiful her voice is. It's just as clear as a bell and so pretty. I would say she sounds kind of like a cross between Linda Ronstadt and Sheryl Crow. The songs are all songs I remember from my jr. high and high school years, so I'm not sure if this will appeal to some of the younger listeners (or men, for that matter), but if you are a woman who grew up in the 60's and 70's and loved the kind of mellow rock type songs, you are sure to love this.
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Beautiful
Maybe it's not great "art" but neither is Britney etc, and this is far more enjoyable than today's pop stars.
I love it. It's soothing. Gentle, beautiful.
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I love Rita's choices of songs, and good for her to have the most awesome people on her CD. I had dinner with Mrs Hanks once before she was married. She was one of the nicest people I have ever met. She is deserving of any success she gets because she is awesome.
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I just happened to catch Rita Wilson on a talk show promoting this CD and was taken aback to hear she could sing. I immediately went to Amazon to check out the album, and was quite impressed with the song choices Rita made, and bought the album after listening to only part of 1 song. I played the whole thing right away and I just love it! It's one of my favorites now!
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A lot of the songs on AM/FM reminded me of good times, and I love to see Rita venturing out into new areas. I get her style, and think she will be a big hit with this album. We will hear a lot more from her, and I will be first in line when she performs in Washington.
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