Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Loving & Free
Genres: Pop, Rock
2008 digitally remastered edition of the British songbird's album, originally released in 1973. Kiki's career within the music industry has been a unique and incredible ride, spanning four decades. She has covered all bas... more »
Listen to Samples
2008 digitally remastered edition of the British songbird's album, originally released in 1973. Kiki's career within the music industry has been a unique and incredible ride, spanning four decades. She has covered all bases - from classic interpretations of Soul hits, to a repertoire of live and recorded material which includes eight UK Top 40 hits as well as masterful performances in major West End musicals. Despite widespread critical acclaim for her work in the '60s, commercial success remained elusive until 1973 when Kiki signed to Elton John's Rocket Records label. The anticipated commercial success materialized. 12 tracks including 'If It Rains', 'You Put Something Better Inside Of Me' and the title track. EMI.
Kiki Dee's Forgotten 1973 Gem Of An Album Is Given A GREAT R
Mark Barry at Reckless Records, Lon | UK | 07/20/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Loving & Free", Pauline Matthews' debut album for Elton John's newly formed Rocket Records was issued in December 1973 on Rocket PIGL 5. This June 2008 UK remaster is the 1st of 6 albums she recorded between 1973 and 1987 being re-issued - and a cracker it is too.
Two singles came off the album at the time - with one other single issued 3 years later as a belated hit. "Lonnie & Josie" b/w "Last Good Man In My Life" was the first with both tracks written by ELTON JOHN and BERNIE TAUPIN; it was released in late 1973 on Rocket PIG 2, but unfortunately it went the same as her earlier singles - it didn't chart. The b-side though has long been sought after by collectors as a non-album JOHN/TAUPIN track unavailable anywhere else - it makes its CD debut on this 2008 release. Apparently it was an outtake from the "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" sessions.
The second 7" single, however, finally hit pay dirt. "Amoureuse" b/w ""Rest My Head" (both from the album) was UK released in November 1973 on Rocket PIG 4 just before the album's release the following month. A beautiful song - it was an immediate hit with the public. Written by French singer VERONIQUE SANSON, its plaintive melody had lyrics added to it by the British composer GARY OSBOURNE. "Rest My Head" is a Kiki Dee original. "Amoureuse" peaked at Number 13 in the UK and introduced Kiki's great voice to the public. It really was a career-maker.
"Loving and Free" (or sometimes referred to as the "Kiki Dee" EP) was finally released a 4-track EP in a Picture Sleeve in September 1976 on Rocket ROKN 515. It followed on the back of the huge number 1 success of the "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" duet with ELTON earlier in June and July of that year. Its 4 tracks are: "Loving And Free", "Amoureuse", "I've Got The Music In Me" and "(You Don't Know) How Glad I Am". Why it wasn't released immediately after "Amoureuse" is anyone's guess?
The album's 10 tracks were famously produced by ELTON JOHN with his house band of DAVEY JOHNSTONE on Guitars, DEE MURRAY on Bass and NIGEL OLSSEN on Drums featuring on many of the songs. Elton himself provided Keyboards and Backing Vocals on seven out of the album's ten tunes (he's also on the non-album b-side). GERRY CONWAY and DAVE MATTACKS of FAIRPORT CONVENTION fame filled in the drums on other tracks with LESLIE DUNCAN of "Love Song" fame providing backing vocals on the superb Kiki original "If It Rains". "Travellin' In Style" is a FREE cover, "Song For Adam" is a JACKSON BROWNE cover introduced to Kiki by Elton, while she gives a very soulful rendition of "You Put Something Better Inside Me", a Gerry Rafferty/Joe Egan written STEALER'S WHEEL song. "Supercool" is the third exclusive JOHN/TAUPIN track - a rocker - though not as good as the better b-side "Last Good Man In My Life". The second and last bonus track "Six Days On the Road" is a previously unreleased raucous cover of Dave Dudley's 1963 hit. It's very good too.
The booklet is excellent - rare 7" single sleeves pictured, photos of Kiki from the time, a knowledgeable CHRIS WHITE synopsis of the album - details of the sessions - its far more comprehensive than I thought it would be. Special mention should also be made of the EMI's REMASTERING done by GEOFF PESCHE at Abbey Road Studios. The sound is just GORGEOUS - and I mean that - really clear - and full. "Loving And Free" and its beautiful guitar work by PAUL KEOGH now sounds astonishing - a treat to hear it given the respect it deserves. Penned by her, it's a criminally forgotten classic of the time.
A minor downside to this otherwise superb re-issue is that both "Lonnie & Josie" and "Amoureuse" were released in the States on MCA 40095 and 40157 respectively - and as advance radio promos, both singles sported a mono and stereo mix on either side. It's a damn shame that the exclusive "US Mono Mix" of each single wasn't included on here as bonuses when there was plenty of room. Niggles worth mentioning.
Other than that, this is like EMI's superb 2006 re-issues of Labi Siffre's 1970's Pye Albums - forgotten goodies given great remastered sound, decent liner notes and genuinely excellent bonus tracks. Thoroughly recommended and a job well done EMI.
PS: The other 5 re-issues are:
1. I've Got The Music In Me (1974 on Rocket Records)
2. Kiki Dee (1977 on Rocket Records)
3. Stay With Me (1979 on Rocket records)
4. Angel Eyes (1987 on Columbia Records)
5. Cage The Songbird
(an unreleased album recorded during the Rocket Records period, now aired for the first time; it also features ELTON JOHN and BERNIE TAUPIN)"
Dale Morgan | Woodstock, GA USA | 08/08/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I can hardly believe this has finally come out. I've been haunted by Kiki's version of Jackson Browne's "Song for Adam" pretty much ever since it came out; it's just exquisite. The sound on the CD is great and the booklet is nicely done and informative. The whole package is just very well put together. Get it while you can!"
One of my favorites
David Cross | Tacoma, WA USA | 01/06/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this album in 1973 when it was first released on vinyl, and I've been looking for it on CD since the time CDs were introduced, as it's been one of my very favorite albums - and still is - for all these years. I never get tired of listening to it. The songs, performances and production, including the pacing/sequencing of the songs, are all first rate, as far as I am concerned. As a drummer, I've also been impressed from my first listening in '73 with the contributions of all three of the album's drummers (Gerry Conway, Dave Mattacks and Nigel Olson) who, like all good drummers who understand that they are accompanists first and foremost, never fail to serve the songs, as opposed to their egos. The same goes for the rest of the supporting cast, too, although I can speak with any expertise only from a drummer's perspective. And Kiki...what a great singer, interpreter, and song writer. She's yet another underrated gem who deserves much greater recognition and success than many of the "stars" who, for reasons that escape me entirely, have achieved much greater commercial success over the years. The two bonus tracks don't add all that much to the listening experience, but I didn't buy the CD for them anyway. I just wanted to be able to continue listening to this album, my vinyl version of which is wearing out..."