LifeLines

LifeLines

by Peter, Paul and Mary
     
 

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After leaving their longtime label home at Warner Bros. Records following the 1978 LP Reunion, Peter, Paul & Mary went the independent, self-releasing route before signing to start-up company Gold Castle for 1986's No Easy to Walk to Freedom. Two albums later, Gold Castle had gone belly up, and the trio returned toSee more details below

Overview

After leaving their longtime label home at Warner Bros. Records following the 1978 LP Reunion, Peter, Paul & Mary went the independent, self-releasing route before signing to start-up company Gold Castle for 1986's No Easy to Walk to Freedom. Two albums later, Gold Castle had gone belly up, and the trio returned to Warner on a one-off basis for their second children's album, Peter, Paul & Mommy, Too, in 1993. The project went sufficiently well for the group to re-sign to Warner for a lengthier term, and the first fruits of that contract is LifeLines, which seems intended as something of a rebirth of Peter, Paul & Mary as well as a re-affirmation of their place in popular music. The format is the familiar one of filling a disc with guest stars, but this time that format has been used not to add a sense of trendiness to a veteran act, but rather to position it within a tradition. Peter, Paul & Mary always served as a bridge, connecting the older folk tradition of the Weavers and Woody Guthrie to the '60s folk revival, connecting the commercial and topical wings of that revival, and connecting developing artists to larger audiences. They do all those things deliberately on LifeLines, and a few other things besides. Peter Yarrow's anthemic "River of Jordan," which first appeared on his solo album Peter in 1972, concludes the album by combining Peter, Paul & Mary with the surviving Weavers, Pete Seeger, Fred Hellerman, and Ronnie Gilbert; three songs earlier, they had brought in Guthrie protégé Ramblin' Jack Elliott to join them on Guthrie's "Deportee." They also mix things up with some of their contemporaries: Dave Van Ronk joins in on a medley of "Wanderin'" and "Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out"; Judy Collins duets with Yarrow on his "Take the Chance"; and Yarrow combines with Richie Havens and the Simon Sisters (Carly Simon and Lucy Simon) on his evergreen "The Great Mandala (The Wheel of Life)," first heard on Peter, Paul & Mary's Album 1700 in 1967. And they are joined by artists they have influenced: Noel Paul Stookey sings his "For the Love of it All" with Emmylou Harris; and Mary Travers duets with Holly Near on "Home Is Where the Heart Is" and with John Gorka on "24 Green Street." (In a match-up without category, she also pairs with B.B. King on "House of the Rising Sun.") Just as they introduced many '60s listeners to songwriters Gordon Lightfoot and John Denver, here Peter, Paul & Mary showcase up-and-comers Buddy Mondlock ("The Kid"), Sally Fingerett ("Home Is Where the Heart Is"), John Fischer ("24 Green Street"), and Cheryl Wheeler ("75 Septembers"), all worthy writers. And they also find time for their own compositions, among them Stookey's comic "Old Enough (Ode to an Aging Rocker)" and Travers' "But a Moment" (with music by Stookey). Of course, no Peter, Paul & Mary album would be worth the name without a heavy helping of social commentary, and this album has plenty. "For the Love of It All" is one of Stookey's Christian meditations; "Home Is Where the Heart Is" preaches tolerance for homosexuality; and "But a Moment" takes on Alzheimer's disease. ("Deportee" sadly remains a relevant reflection on migrant workers.) But the philosophical and political aspects of the music seem less important this time around than the communion of musicians who work well with Peter, Paul & Mary, supporting them when called upon, but leaving them the spotlight on such characteristic tracks as the medley of "Babylon" and "Oh Sinner Man," which could have been on any one of their albums dating back to the early '60s. Thirty-five years into their career, LifeLines is a major statement of who they are now and who they have been all along.

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Product Details

Release Date:
04/11/1995
Label:
Warner Bros / Wea
UPC:
0093624585145
catalogNumber:
45851

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Peter, Paul and Mary   Primary Artist
Emmylou Harris   Vocals
Judy Collins   Vocals
John Gorka   Vocals
Richie Havens   Vocals
Pete Seeger   Banjo,Vocals
Holly Near   Vocals
John Sebastian   Harmonica
Carly Simon   Vocals
Mary Travers   Vocals
Peter Yarrow   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Darryl Tookes   Background Vocals
Vaneese Thomas   Background Vocals
David Nadien   Violin
Dave Van Ronk   Vocals
Sue Evans   Percussion
Dominic Cortese   Accordion
Jill Dell'Abate   Background Vocals
Lamar Alsop   Viola
Bashiri Johnson   Percussion
Tony Beard   Drums
Ramblin' Jack Elliott   Vocals
David Finck   Bass
Ronnie Gilbert   Vocals
Diva Gray   Background Vocals
Fred Hellerman   Vocals
Doug Katsaros   Synthesizer,Strings,Keyboards,Background Vocals
B.B. King   Guitar,Vocals
Charles McCracken   Cello
Dean Parks   Guitar
Matthew Raimondi   Violin
Lucy Simon   Vocals
Noel Paul Stookey   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Dick Kniss   Bass
Sean McNamara   Alto Saxophone
Elise Morris   Background Vocals
Karen Ramone   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Tom Paxton   Contributor
Holly Near   Contributor
Robert DeCormier   Arranger
Larry Alexander   Engineer
Roy Hendrickson   Engineer
Doug Katsaros   Arranger
John Patterson   Engineer
Phil Ramone   Producer
Tom Bender   Engineer
David Halberstam   Liner Notes
Studs Terkel   Liner Notes

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