Search - Bert Jansch :: Jack Orion

Jack Orion
Bert Jansch
Jack Orion
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (8) - Disc #1

UK reissue of the influential British folk artist's 1966 album, remastered from the original tapes. Eight tracks including, 'The Waggoner's Lad', 'The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face' & 'The Gardener'. Packaged in a standa...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Bert Jansch
Title: Jack Orion
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: Castle Music UK
Original Release Date: 1/1/2001
Re-Release Date: 8/21/2001
Album Type: Import
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop, Rock
Styles: Traditional Folk, British & Celtic Folk, Folk Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 766487890526


Album Description
UK reissue of the influential British folk artist's 1966 album, remastered from the original tapes. Eight tracks including, 'The Waggoner's Lad', 'The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face' & 'The Gardener'. Packaged in a standard jewel case in a slipcase.

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CD Reviews

Classic, raw Bert
William M. Feagin | Upstate New York, USA | 05/02/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"OK, granted, Bert's vocals on the title cut are a bit uneven--but that's the great thing about traditional folk music. The little mistakes don't seem entirely out of place, and admittedly, "Jack Orion" is one of those epic songs that require a great feat of memory to keep all the lyrics straight (or a handy lyric sheet in front of you) during a performance. Never has Jansch seemed quite so real as he does here.

These eight tracks are classic performances, and quite obviously done live--there are no overdubs, just Bert, his guitar, banjo and voice, with backing from John Renbourn on guitar. It's easy to see why Jimmy Page nicked the melody from "Blackwaterside" for "Black Mountain Side," as Bert really nails the Irish ballad flat. And I'll agree, his version of "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" resembles no other version of the song recorded to date--wonder what Ewan MacColl thought of it? Lack of polish aside (I think of Bert's "Needle of Death" from 1965 for an example of a more professional-sounding track, particularly from the Jansch oeuvre), Jack Orion is a real delight."
Bert Jansch (and John Renbourn) play traditional folk songs
Lawrance M. Bernabo | The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota | 04/27/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

""Jack Orion" was Bert Jansch's third solo album, recorded in the early summer of 1966, and the first on which he played traditional folk songs rather than mostly original compositions. Jansch plays guitar, banjo and piano on the album, with John Renbourn also showing up to play guitar on half of the tracks (1, 3, 6 and 8). The two had just finished doing an album together and would, of course, eventually end up playing their dueling guitars for the group Pentangle, one of the premier British folk groups of the Sixties along with Fairport Convention (or whichever group had Sandy Denny singing lead vocals).

The title track is 9:46 long and one of those times when Jansch's vocals get in the way of enjoying his guitar playing, which is always the chief attraction on his albums. That is why the instrumental tracks, "The Waggoner's Lad" and "Henry Martin," are my favorite on this 1966 album. The most familiar songs are the instrumental take on "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face," which you might need a moment to recognize (I think he improves the tune nicely), "Nottamun Town," which is where Bob Dylan got the melody for "Masters of War," and "Blackwaterside," which was transformed by Jimmy Page into "Black Mountain Side" on Led Zeppelin's debut album.

I find "Jack Orion" the album to be a second tier Jansch album, which still makes it worth listening (if you are not totally captivated by the title track it is hard to rate it otherwise). The more I listen to his work the more I start to think that I hear him doing something I have heard before, but that never turns out to be the case. But what you keep coming back to is how Jansch is one of the best guitar players you have ever heard and you will enjoy pretty much anything he plays. Word from the U.K. is that Jansch is taking a break from live performances for the first half of 2005 in order to concentrate on a new album, which is certainly welcome news. It is good to know there will be yet another Bert Jansch album to track down in the future."