On her 1993 recording "No Strings", Sheena Easton departed from the pop mainstream to record her versions of some classic standards. Two years later, now in her mid 30's, Sheena turned to the softer side of pop with "My Cherie". Backed by soft keyboards, the music is subdued compared to the dance tunes on "What Comes Naturally" (1991). There are just a couple of tunes that could even be called "danceable". Instead, the song selection reflects the maturity of the artist, both as a singer, and as a person.
The upbeat "Too Much in Love", is a bouncy number with a catchy chorus that is fun to sing along with. The title cut, "My Cherie" is a swinging pop tune, that grows on you with repeated listenings. Sheena's voice gets a workout on this energetic mid tempo number. "Next to You", is a playful light-hearted song, that provides a change of pace, and helps to spice up the collection.
Most of the rest of the tunes are slower, and not so light in tone. "Dance Away the Blues" is a beautiful, and emotion filled ballad, that Sheena handles wonderfully. The lyrics are potent, and evoke much feeling. This song is an undiscovered gem, one of the best things she's done in the 90's.
Reminiscent of her best power ballads is "You've Learned to Live Without Me". It doesn't quite touch the heart like the classic, "I'm Almost Over You", but it's still a solid effort. "Please Don't Be Scared" has a little lighter tone, but it is still very familiar territory for Sheena, and she delivers another strong vocal.
"Till Death Do Us Part" is a slow rhythmic ballad, with a melancholy vibe. A song with beautiful lyrics, that Sheena gives the full treatment. "All I Ask of You" is another slow rhythmic tune, with a rather subdued vocal, that also seems to sound better after repeated listenings.
"Flower in the Rain" is a well-constructed keyboard power ballad, that gets a slight edge from the electric guitar. "Crazy Love", finds Sheena singing to a light piano accompaniment. In the spotlight, her voice shows power, emotion and range, with the style and phrasing reminiscent of her performance on "No Strings".
Sheena Easton is a talented singer, with an expressive voice. Blessed with early success, she rose to pop stardom. When success began to slip away, Sheena became a follower of musical trends, attempting to recapture it. "No Strings" signaled an end to that chase. The music on My Cherie best suits those who like Sheena, have reached mid life and are a bit older and wiser. If that's you, give this a listen. Chances are you may relate.