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Natural Woman/Is That All There Is?

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
The compilers of British EMI's extensive "two on one" reissue series have made some questionable choices in combining two albums originally issued on LP into a single CD, but it's hard to second guess this one, which contains the two albums Peggy Lee released in 1969, A Natural Woman and Is That All There Is? Not only are the collections chronologically sequential, but it sounds like the second one employs tracks recorded for the first one. By the late '60s, Lee, like many other veteran pop singers, was attempting to keep current and keep selling records by incorporating current trends in pop
ock into her music. A Natural Woman ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
The compilers of British EMI's extensive "two on one" reissue series have made some questionable choices in combining two albums originally issued on LP into a single CD, but it's hard to second guess this one, which contains the two albums Peggy Lee released in 1969, A Natural Woman and Is That All There Is? Not only are the collections chronologically sequential, but it sounds like the second one employs tracks recorded for the first one. By the late '60s, Lee, like many other veteran pop singers, was attempting to keep current and keep selling records by incorporating current trends in pop
ock into her music. A Natural Woman alternates efforts by two prominent Los Angeles session musicians serving as arranger/conductors, pianist Mike Melvoin and trumpeter Bobby Bryant. This is one of those albums that sounds like these guys (and perhaps Lee, too) came up with the set list by listening to their AM radios, tuned to the local Top 40 station, on the freeway on their way to the session. They hear, say, Aretha Franklin's "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman," Otis Redding's "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay," Sly & the Family Stone's "Everyday People," and Blood, Sweat & Tears' "Spinning Wheel," and, by the time they pull into the parking lot, they've got the gist of the arrangement down and proceed to re-create it, more or less, with their fellow session pros, as Lee gamely approximates the hit vocals. When they do use a vintage piece of material, such as "(All of a Sudden) My Heart Sings," or come up with an original ("Lean on Me"), they are still keeping in mind what they heard on the radio, so that the former sounds like watered-down Motown and the latter has the modified R&B funkiness of Frank Sinatra's "That's Life." The atypical last song on A Natural Woman leads right into Is That All There Is? It's Randy Newman's introspective ballad "I Think It's Gonna Rain Today," and since Newman arranged and conducted Lee's surprise comeback hit with Leiber & Stoller's European-style art song "Is That All There Is?" (inspired by a Thomas Mann short story), and that song leads off the second LP, the mood stays constant. And that mood continues with the next track, "Love Story," another Newman composition, even if Lee, the disillusionment of "Is That All There Is?" notwithstanding, cannot bring herself to sing Newman's fatalistic final couplet, "We'll play checkers all day/Until we pass away." Instead, she substitutes "We'll play checkers in the sun/Playing checkers can be fun." Unfortunately, Is That All There Is? doesn't turn out to be a complete album of similar material. In fact, it is actually a cobbled-together rush job that was assembled on the fly to have an LP in the record racks while "Is That All There Is?," which had been released as a one-off single, was still in the charts. Capitol Records thought nothing of recycling previously released tracks including Lee's 1963 hit "I'm a Woman" (also written by Leiber & Stoller) to pad the collection out to LP length. Toward the end, there are some good songs and arrangements in the art song style of "Is That All There Is?," however, notably Newman's "Linda," which has had its gender switched and is called "Johnny (Linda)." But the Is That All There Is? LP remains a patchwork Peggy Lee album, even suitably paired with A Natural Woman.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/30/2003
  • Label: Emd Int'l
  • UPC: 724359265728
  • Catalog Number: 592657

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 (All of a Sudden) My Heart Sings - Félix Leclerc (2:55)
  2. 2 Don't Explain - Félix Leclerc (4:03)
  3. 3 Can I Change My Mind? - Félix Leclerc (2:53)
  4. 4 Lean on Me - Félix Leclerc (2:48)
  5. 5 (Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay - Félix Leclerc (2:40)
  6. 6 (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman - Félix Leclerc (3:04)
  7. 7 Everyday People - Félix Leclerc (2:50)
  8. 8 Please Send Me Someone to Love - Félix Leclerc (4:11)
  9. 9 Spinning Wheel - Félix Leclerc (2:40)
  10. 10 Living Is Dying Without You - Félix Leclerc (3:30)
  11. 11 I Think It's Gonna Rain Today - Félix Leclerc (3:18)
  12. 12 Is That All There Is? - Félix Leclerc (4:22)
  13. 13 Love Story - Félix Leclerc (3:31)
  14. 14 Me and My Shadow - Félix Leclerc (3:07)
  15. 15 Sing a Rainbow - Félix Leclerc (2:31)
  16. 16 My Old Flame - Félix Leclerc (4:30)
  17. 17 I'm a Woman - Félix Leclerc (2:10)
  18. 18 Somethin' Stupid - Félix Leclerc (2:35)
  19. 19 Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show - Félix Leclerc (3:08)
  20. 20 Something - Félix Leclerc (3:11)
  21. 21 Whistle for Happiness - Félix Leclerc (2:12)
  22. 22 Johnny (Linda) - Félix Leclerc (2:52)
  23. 23 I Can Hear the Music - Félix Leclerc (1:59)
  24. 24 Don't Smoke in Bed - Félix Leclerc (3:12)
  25. 25 You Must Have a Beautiful Baby - Félix Leclerc (1:50)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Peggy Lee Primary Artist
Technical Credits
Percy Mayfield Composer
Peggy Lee Composer
Steve Cropper Composer
Neil Diamond Composer
George Harrison Composer
Carole King Composer
Randy Newman Composer
Otis Redding Composer
Al Jolson Composer
Mundell Lowe Composer
Ellie Greenwich Composer
David Clayton-Thomas Composer
Gerry Goffin Composer
Jerry Leiber Composer
Harold Rome Composer
Phil Spector Composer
Jeff Barry Composer
Billie Holiday Composer
Arthur Hamilton Composer
Arthur Herzog Jr. Composer
Joel Hirschhorn Composer
Al Kasha Composer
Mike Melvoin Composer
Johnny Mercer Composer
Sylvester "Sly Stone" Stewart Composer
Mike Stoller Composer
Harry Warren Composer
Jerry Wexler Composer
Steve Genewick Remastering
Arthur Johnston Composer
David McEowen Remastering
Willard Robison Composer
Sam Coslow Composer
Dave Dreyer Composer
Steve Hoffman Remastering
Henri Herpin Composer
C. Carson Parks Composer
Billy Rose Composer
Cy Godfrey Remastering
Jean Marie Blanvillain Composer
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