CD Sound of Poetry (CD 4540400),
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Sound of Poetry

  • 0. DISC 1:
    1. November Night
    2. Narcissus
    3. Farewell
    4. Greenaway
    5. Youth & Age
    6. Pershore Station - (featuring Richard Sharp)
    7. Peggy
    8. Myfanwy At Oxford
    9. Indoor Games
    10. Moira McCavendish
    11. Distant View
    12. In Memory
    13. Sunday Morning - (featuring Rodolfus Choir)
    14. Myfanwy - (featuring David Essex)
    0. DISC 2:
    1. Tregardock
    2. Harrow On the Hill
    3. Newest Bath Guide - (featuring Donovan)
    4. Archibald - (featuring Elliot Frisby)
    5. Hunter Trials - (featuring Annie Haslam)
    6. Subaltern's Love Song (Joan Hunter Dunn)
    7. May Day Song For North Oxford - (featuring Eton College Chapel Choir)
    8. Parliament Hill Fields
    9. Slough - (featuring Ian McNabb)
    10. Nw5 8x N6 (Highgate At Eventide) - (featuring Students of Architecture)
    11. Executive
    12. Fete Champetre, The
    13. Upper Lambourn - (featuring Cantabile)
    14. Late Flowering Lust - (featuring Simon Bowman)
    15. Conversion - (featuring David Grant)
    16. Christmas
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): SJPCD288

  • Credits
    ProducerJon Sweet; Rod Edwards
    EngineerGerry Kitchingharn; Mike Nocito

    Composer: Mike Read.
    Personnel: Hugh Burns, Torn Tourney (guitar); Peter Boita (drums, percussion); Anthony Thompson, Tony Rivers (background vocals).
    Liner Note Author: Mike Read.
    Recording information: R.G. Jones; Somerset; Winbledon 6 Powersong.
    A two-CD release for a pair of albums that British DJ/songwriter Mike Read put together around his love of the poems of Sir John Betjeman, Sound of Poetry features the Knight's words, Read's music, and a host of guest vocalists that ranges from Marc Almond and Cliff Richard to Jon Anderson, Don McLean, and even Captain Sensible. Add Steve Harley, Gene Pitney, Leo Sayer, Colin Blunstone, Donovan, and Alvin Stardust to the brew, a hit single by David Essex, and even some George Martin orchestration, and you are looking at an incredibly ambitious and beautifully realized collection, not to mention one of those extraordinarily rare moments when pop sensibility and poetic beauty truly come together. Yes there are some moments that border on the saccharine, but there are also some incredibly stirring pieces too, highlighted by Almond's so-emotive rendering of "Narcissus" and Blunstone's characteristically lovelorn "In Memory." Thirty songs do make for a somewhat overstuffed feast, which is presumably why the two albums were originally released separately. It must also be said that disc two is considerably weaker than its twin, both in terms of performers and poems. But the overall package is an unexpected joy regardless. ~ Dave Thompson

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