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Take Me Home: A Tribute To John Denver

3.4 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 1, 2016
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Editorial Reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 1, 2016)
  • Original Release Date: April 18, 2000
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: BADMAN RECORDING CO.
  • ASIN: B00004SG4K
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #271,242 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Peter Blackstock on June 2, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I thought it necessary to respond to the review where someone said they thought it sounded like the artists on this disc maybe were more concerned about their paycheck for their contribution than anything else. I'd have to contend that I believe nothing could be further from the truth, in that it's quite obvious these songs were performed in a way which will not bring them any sort of mass airplay or exposure whatsoever.
It's certainly true that these versions of Denver's songs are pretty far out there and may indeed not be able to be appreciated by a vast contingent of Denver's fans. The musicians involved are typically looking for another window into Denver's music, and the result is generally a pretty drastic reworking of the material. Certainly they could have been more faithful and direct in their interpretations, but it seems to me that the value of such a project is to do something distinctly different from the existing versions.
It is, unquestionably, evidence that Denver's music means something to artists whose interests lie far beyond the boundaries of what you'd hear on commercial radio these days. Whether that's a good or a bad thing may depend on how interested you are in venturing beyond those boundaries. The artists involved deserve, I believe, to be respected for their willingness to take Denver's songs out of their usual confines, even if the results may not agree with a lot of his fans.
Also, just to be clear, not everything here is really that far out on a limb. I'd venture to guess most any Denver fan would enjoy the Innocence Mission's take on "Follow Me", and probably Mark Kozelek & Rachel Goswell's version of "Around And Around" as well. And possibly Sunshine Club's "Annie's Song".... Beyond that, yes, it does get a bit esoteric. And it may not be worth exploring for many Denver fans. But I did feel that comment about the artists just looking for a paycheck needed to be contradicted.
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Format: Audio CD
I liked John Denver's music when it was first out, through the years of mockery, and now after his death. Not in a kitsch way either, I just like most of what can be called his sappy and positive songs. After he did the est training (for you youngsters, est was a late 1970s-era enlightenment weekend seminar), he was the butt of jokes, personal and media, but I continued to listen to his music. And my husband Eric is even worse; we're old folkies (in our mid-40s) and he would sing John Denver tunes at our music circles. "Who wrote that?" people would ask admiringly, then feel they had to sneer when they heard it was John Denver tune. We hosted a John Denver song night when he died, all John Denver tunes, all evening. We mourned his death. Positive people are often looked down on as being Pollyanna-ish, but I tell you, having upbeat, loving people in one's life -- people who aren't afraid to swoon over the pleasure and mystery of life despite our overwhelmingly negative and superficial culture -- is a blessing.
That said, I also like a lot of contemporary music too, and I love this collection. It's moody and emotional and personal. I admire what the artists have done with Denver's songs. I hear the songs anew and appreciate them all over again.
Rachel Haden's playful rewrite of "Poems, Prayers, and Promises" is brilliantly executed, and Hannah Marcus does a dark "Looking for Space" that I found quite effective. "The Eagle and the Hawk" is a spare rendition, austere even, that highlights Denver's songwriting ability.
I mark this CD down a star because of the interminable version of "Fly Away" by Red House Painters, 6+ minutes of jangly guitar noise, out of place on an otherwise atmospheric and delicious disc. However, their finale tune, "I'm Sorry," shows that they do understand both the sentiment and the songwriting of John Denver. I'm glad this isn't a mocking "tribute" to a dead Pollyanna, but rather a tender and insightful homage.
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By A Customer on July 18, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Because of his straightforward and honest approach to music, you have to give John Denver just a little bit of credit. As much as it may shame you to admit that you sing along to "Sunshine on My Shoulders", I bet that you also know the words to "Leaving on a Jet Plane". Four years after his untimely death in a plane accident, it is suddenly o.k. for one to admit that they are a John Denver fan. Luckily, Mark Kozelek, one of the best singer/songwriters of the 90s, is also a Denver fan, and his passion for Denver's lyrics and melodies led him to assemble this rewarding compilation of songs. Most the artists on this cd have placed their own unique stamps on Denver's song, a strategy that pays off for Low ("Back Home Again"), The Innocence Mission ("Follow Me"), and Will Oldham (The Eagle and the Hawk.") Unfortunately, Tarnation destroy the beauty of "Jet Plane", but that is the only disappointment here. The highlights come from Kozelek, who harmonizes beautifully with Rachel Goswell from Mojave on "Around and Around." Additionally, Kozelek and his acoustic guitar shine on "I'm Sorry", a sad tale of yearning and love lost. Despite the depressing lyrics: "I'm sorry for the way things are in China, I'm sorry things ain't what they used to be, but more than anything else, I'm sorry for myself", they ultimately reflect Denver's social conscious and desire to deliver from the heart. I highly recommend this cd for anyone interested in discovering the magic of John Denver, or to hear current independent musicians honor this great songwriter.
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