26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
A brief but brilliant career,
This review is from: Ode To Bobbie Gentry - The Capitol Years (Audio CD)
Bobbie Gentry did not record many albums but several compilations have been released. Because Bobbie only had a few big hits that have to be included, the remainder of each compilation often differs significantly. For example, this UK compilation includes a number of cover versions but no duets. Other compilations may include more self-penned songs or some of her duets with Glen Campbell.
Of course, this compilation includes Ode to Billie Joe (an American number one and British top twenty hit) and I'll never fall in love again (a British number one hit). Perhaps these two songs, more than anything else, show the difference in tastes between British and American listeners. Ode to Billie Joe is a Bobbie Gentry original - a classic country song with a bluesy edge. Contrast that with I'll never fall in love again, a mainstream pop song written by Bacharach and David, first recorded by Dionne Warwick (and not to be confused with the Tom Jones hit of the same title). Following her British success, Bobbie became a TV presenter and this affected her recordings - she sometimes selected material that would appeal to her TV audience.
Apart from Ode to Billie Joe, there are some interesting self-penned originals here, these being Mississippi delta (the flip side of Ode), Fancy (a minor American hit, later revived by Reba McEntire), Touch em with love, and Reunion. This collection was meant to include Chickasaw County Child, but instead included Papa, Won't You Let Me Go To Town, a different song. So there are just six of Bobbie's own songs here but you can find more of her songs on other compilations.
There are plenty of covers. Son of a preacher man was a huge hit for Dusty Springfield. You've made me so very happy was originally written and recorded by Motown's Brenda Holloway, but it was Blood sweat and tears who had the hit. In the ghetto was a transatlantic hit for Elvis Presley. Hushabye mountain is a song from Chitty chitty bang bang. Skip along Sam is an obscure song by Donovan, a Scottish folk-rocker inspired by Bob Dylan.
This is a great collection of Bobbie's music, showing all aspects of her music except her duets. Nevertheless, if you are primarily looking for her own songs, you should look at the alternative compilations.