Ronnie Spector – English Heart (2016/2018)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 31:55 minutes | 659 MB | Genre: Pop
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Savoy
With hits like Be My Baby and Baby I Love You, Ronnie Spector ruled the pop charts worldwide as lead singer of the Ronettes. Now the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee is set to release “English Heart”, Ronnie s personal love letter to 1960s Britain where she toured with The Ronettes in 1964-1966, supported by the Rolling Stones, the Kinks, and the Yardbirds (with Eric Clapton).
Produced and mixed by Grammy Award–winning producer, songwriter, and musician Scott Jacoby (Vampire Weekend, Sia, Coldplay), ‘English Heart’ is Ronnie’s personal love letter to 1960s Britain – where she toured with the Ronettes in 1964-1966, supported by the Rolling Stones, the Kinks, and the Yardbirds (with Eric Clapton) among other acts. The eleven tracks of ‘English Heart’ comprise a collection of Ronnie’s hand–picked favorites including songs recorded by the Kinks (“Tired of Waiting”), the Animals (“Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood”), the Beatles (“I’ll Follow the Sun”), and Gerry & the Pacemakers (“Don’t Let the Sun Catch You Crying”).
“Be My Baby” was approaching the peak of the UK charts in January 1964 when Ronnie Spector stepped onto the tarmac at London’s Heathrow Airport to begin the Ronettes’ first British tour. With her inimitable voice, distinctive style, and exciting live performances, Ronnie soon found herself welcomed into the inner circle of British pop royalty.
“I’ll never forget my very first impressions of England in that winter of ’64,” Ronnie recalls. “I’d never traveled outside the US before. To arrive at Heathrow and be welcomed by those kids was an amazing feeling. We’d never had fans waiting at an airport to greet us.”
‘Engish Heart’ is a musical homage to that magical time and an expression of Ronnie’s desire to sing from the most honest and intimate part of herself: Her performance is so raw and so real that the listener may seem to hear Ronnie’s life story in her interpretations of these songs. Scott Jacoby has preserved the timeless spirit of the material while bringing a distinctly con-temporary yet subtle touch.
This is the Ronnie Spector whose indomitable spirit and singular talent have inspired the admi-ration of countless peers including Bruce Springsteen, Patti Smith, Joey Ramone, and Amy Winehouse. This is the REAL Ronnie Spector!
“Few if any artists of the girl group era were as iconic as Ronnie Spector. As the lead singer of the Ronettes, Ronnie was the crown jewel of Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound (and also his wife for a while). But as iconic sounds of the ’60s go, Ronnie and her peers had to play second fiddle to the Beatles and the many other British groups who invaded America in their wake. As it happens, Ronnie was a fan of the British Invasion bands just like the rest of us. What’s more, she shared stages with the Rolling Stones, the Yardbirds, and the Kinks when the Ronettes toured the U.K. back in the day. So it makes sense that Ronnie would look back at this era by recording an album of classic tunes by great British acts of the ’60s. Released in 2016, English Heart features covers of ten memorable British rock tunes from the ’60s. (She also throws in one ringer, the Bee Gees’ “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart,” which the Australian act released in 1971.) It’s certainly a fun idea for an album, and Ronnie and producer Scott Jacoby have chosen wisely, tackling hits that suit her moody timbre, as well as a few lesser-known classics. (The Rolling Stones’ obscurity “I’d Much Rather Be with the Boys,” here given a gender switch, is an inspired pick. So is Sandie Shaw’s mournful “Girl Don’t Come,” a U.K. smash that didn’t do much in the States.) Jacoby’s production is strong, giving the material arrangements that honor their original era but have a fresh modern twist. Sadly, if this album has a weak link, it’s Ronnie Spector. She still has a fine sense of phrasing, and she brings a fitting sense of drama to the material. But Ronnie’s voice just isn’t what it once was, and there’s often a sour edge to her vocals. She’s doesn’t sound bad, but her instrument lacks the power and focus it had in her youth, and as the centerpiece of this album, it falls short. English Heart is a great concept, and for the most part the execution works, but one can’t help but wish it had been recorded in the ’70s or ’80s, when Ronnie’s voice was strong enough to make the most of the material.” (Mark Deming, AMG)
1. Oh Me Oh My (I’m A Fool For You Baby) 03:35
2. Because 02:29
3. I’d Much Rather Be With The Girls 02:48
4. Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Crying 03:02
5. Tired Of Waiting 03:25
6. Tell Her No 02:15
7. I’ll Follow The Sun 02:13
8. You’ve Got Your Troubles 03:21
9. Girl Don’t Come 02:09
10. Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood 02:37
11. How Can You Mend A Broken Heart 03:56