Peter Dawson--Songs of Sea and Empire
Gary A. Lynch | Los Angeles, California | 06/26/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you are a Peter Dawson devotee, as I am, this is an essential album to have. It includes many items I had never heard the great man sing, as well as some of his greatest song renditions. No Peter Dawson collection is complete without "We Saw the Sea", "On the Road to Mandelay", "The Fleet's not in Port Very Long", and "Saddle Your Blues to a Wild Mustang". Among the titles that were new to me that I liked were "The Unacccompanied Organist", and some of the Australian Bush Songs. Mr. Dawson is quite an acquired taste for an American. He was at his best singing songs of the British Empire glories. Once you have heard him at his best though, singing his definitive version of "Waltzing Matilda" or any of about 30 selections that could be described as his "greatest hits", I think if you have any feeling for they type of music he performed, you will be hooked. Mr. Dawson may be the finest singer that Americans have never heard of. Only one record, that of 'Matilda', backed by the "Mauri Poi Song", was ever released in the United States in his lifetime (1882-1961). Luckily, more of his material is coming to CD, and music listeners are the better for it. For years, I was restricted to an occasional Gilbert and Sullivan aria that happened to be in a collection, or the occasional '78 that happened to have made it across the ocean somehow. This CD was a good addition to my Dawson collection, and I recommend it."