Holly Near – You Can Know All I Am (Originally released in 1976 on LP)

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On her third album, Holly Near returned to the recording studio and to the most elaborate arrangements of her career so far, embracing an eclectic mixture of styles including pop, rock, folk, country, gospel, jazz, Latin, Asian, and American Indian (not yet called Native American) music, plus the occasional use of a string section or a string quartet, lots of backup vocals, and even a women’s choir. The arrangements were the work of her accompanist, Jeff Langley, who also served as pianist, co-producer, and co-writer of ten of the 12 songs. Never short of confidence, Near met the challenge of the instrumentation with typically powerful singing. Her lyrics, however, showed little growth in what she called “a collection of short plays.” Much of the subject matter was familiar from A Live Album. There were a few pleasant love songs, a couple of more songs about dumping a lover (at least one of them, “Gotta Let Go,” was nice about it), a couple of more songs about life on the road, and a few musical observations about the lives of women. The most political song, “Broken Promises,” conflated the American Indian Movement and Vietnam. The livelier and more personal songs, such as “It’s My Move” (featuring electric guitar work by Lee Ritenour) and “You’ve Got Me Flying,” were the most convincing; it was when Near was describing more troubled matters that she sounded forced, if (no doubt) sincere, as if she were a basically happy person with a basically unhappy world view.
AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann

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TRACK LISTING
It’s My Move
Someday One Will Do
Song To A Melody
Don’t Take My Sunday Paper
Winner Takes All
Broken Promises
Nicolia
Gotta Let Go
You’ve Got Me Flying
Damn The Poets
You Can Know All I Am
Sister-Woman-Sister

 

Additional information

Weight 8 oz
Format

Physical Copy, Download, It's My Move, Someday One Will Do, Song To A Melody, Don't Take My Sunday Paper, Winner Takes All, Broken Promises, Nicolia, Gotta Let Go, You've Got Me Flying, Damn The Poets, You Can Know All I Am, Sister-Woman-Sister

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