Personnel: John Stewart (vocals, guitar, banjo, harmonica); John Stewart (various instruments); John Hoke (various instruments, 12-string guitar, piano, organ, keyboards, string synthesizer, drums, percussion); Dave Batti (accordion); Kate Wallace (vocals); Henry Diltz (harmonica). Liner Note Author: Jim Musselman. Recording information: Dreamland Studios, Los Angeles, CA; John's Home Studio, Novato, CA; Jorgo's World Famous Music Room Of Sierra Madre, CA. Photographers: John Stewart; Dave Batti; Buffy Ford Stewart. Singer/songwriter John Stewart's musical career reaches back to the early '60s with the Kingston Trio, and so a new collection of his songs, presented with fairly basic arrangements, must seem like something of a homecoming. Stewart's smoky, weathered vocals (with just a touch of reverb added) brings an authentic style to "Baby, It's You," "Jasmine," and the title cut. He's joined on a number of cuts by bassist Dave Batti, percussionist John Hoke, harp player Henry Diltz, and, in one instance, the background singing of Penny Roberts, Bianca Batti, Kate Wallace, and Cina Batti. With such a simple setup, what really stands out on The Day the River Sang are the singer and the songs, one man's interpretation of his own work. This gives songs like "Sister Mercy" an intimate, revelatory feel. Overall, the work here is fairly mellow, so it's nice when upbeat songs like "Amanda Won't Dance" and "Midnight Train" mix things up a bit. The album closes with the relaxed, bluesy "Slider," complete with some nifty electric guitar riffs by Stewart. For those who appreciate Stewart's gift as a singer/songwriter, The Day the River Sang offers a new chapter in an ongoing musical saga. ~ Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.
- Artist : Stewart,John
- Label : Appleseed Records
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