Just A Matter Of Time-Classic Columbia Recordings 1962-1966 Import
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Audio CD, Import, 28 Sep 2009
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* Compiled by life-long Aretha aficionado David Nathan, "Just A Matter Of Time" contains 24 of her Columbia tracks that have a higher soul content than many of those that are available elsewhere and also focuses on tracks that have not been reissued on CD recently - or, in most cases, at all.
* In-demand items such as `One Step Ahead' and `I Can't Wait Until I See My Baby's Face' are matched by the invigorating `Rough Lover' and `It's So Heartbreakin'' (which shares its piano intro with her Atlantic recording of `You Send Me'). As well as rare singles, Kent also have the choicest cuts from three of Ms Franklin's most soulful Columbia albums - and also premiere two stunning unissued cuts from the Columbia vaults which have been mixed specially for this project by our friends at Sound Mastering.
* Aretha's Columbia recordings have eventually become as acclaimed by soul fans as her later Atlantic sides. Here are two dozen of the very finest.
Top customer reviews
That's a generalisation and you and I know it. In this album, David Nathan has set out to show that, even if they were in a tiny minority, Aretha did cut some soulful performances whilst at Columbia. In the Kent spiel for the album they say that Nathan ".. focuses entirely on the soul and R&B tracks she cut for the company". They have also been at pains not to conflict with other Columbia compilations with the result that a few tracks that might be described as "soul and R&B" appearing elsewhere - and there are a few - aren't included here so buyers won't have overlap issues.
So, did they succeed?
For me, it's a No, but. Having said that, there is a lot here of considerable interest and I'm pleased that Nathan and Kent made the effort.
Taking the R&B first there's no more than a handful. What is so frustrating is than an absolute stormer like "Hands off" is hardly replicated anywhere else in the Franklin Columbia oeuvre. This is the sort of thing that other soul divas like Etta James and (Little) Esther Phillips cut their teeth on, and they were doing it back in the fifties. Aretha was obviously enjoying herself and you couldn't say that often in relation to her Columbia work. One or two tracks like "Rough lover", and "Deeper" come close but there's nowhere near enough of them.
I would agree that there are quite a few more tracks that could broadly be called Soul Music but that's allowing for a pretty wide definition with the inclusion of some soul jazz outings. Disappointingly a number of bluesy Columbia efforts I've heard elsewhere don't get included for the reason I gave in my second para. And what we don't really get on any of these tracks is evidence of deep conviction, of the translation of religious fervour to secular passion as we'd already had from the aforementioned Etta James, Betty Harris and others.
I'm very conscious that I'm not even damning the album with faint praise - it's more like damning it with not so faint criticism. BUT and it's a big one, if you took away that ".. focuses entirely on the soul and R&B tracks she cut for the company", then I'd view the album in a much more pleasing listening light even without having few tracks that really stand out. What it does have are much more interesting songs than average Aretha Columbia fare. Ones that I'd regard as favourites are "When they ask about you", the Jerry Ragavoy / Chip Taylor "I can't wait until I see my baby's face", the self-penned blues "I'll keep on smiling" where she almost breaks into Atlantic mode, "You've got her" with gospelly vocal support, and the country soul "Here's where I came in (here's where I walk out)".
And I would repeat, thank you David and Kent for trying.
Awesome photo on front cover.
But only a dozen tracks worth repeated listening imho .
Rough lover and you don't know amongst the highlights.
On the Shoop shoop song, although she sounds much better than Shirley Gunter, the song just lacks the energy of the original.
If you like soul love songs and like it softer than the Atlantic, you will like this cd.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Finally a compilation of Columbia material that is not the same tracks CBS had issued for the past few decades.
Two unreleased songs from the vaults and many 45 RPM sides premiering here for the first time on any CD. Well worth the price. Also a detailed and interesting booklet filled with facts from David Nathan (THE Ambassador of Soul) about the origins of certain tracks. Very good research and 2 rare pics I haven't seen before.
Now to get Columbia to give a Complete Columbia Box Set over to Nathan to oversee. One with all the unreleased tracks is way overdo OR a complete collectors set of all her Columbia LPs all in a collectors box. Like the ones I have seen done on Sinatra and The Beatles!
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