She Sang California

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Bruce Eder
At times, this isn't an easy record to listen to, but it is rewarding many times over. "Big Fat Man," the opening track on She Sang California, is bound to elicit smiles from the listener -- and it's not even the funniest track on the album. But from the more obviously humorous moments to the slow blues of "Easy Rider," Judy Henske transforms into a kind of distaff Howlin' Wolf, and then she's a saloon singer doing an irony-laced rendition of Irving Berlin's "Ace in the Hole." Henske walks and sings through several layers of the human psyche, neatly poeticizing and encapsulating the nature of alcohol dependency "Cocktail Hour" and those who feed off of it "Lowlife" -- and ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Bruce Eder
At times, this isn't an easy record to listen to, but it is rewarding many times over. "Big Fat Man," the opening track on She Sang California, is bound to elicit smiles from the listener -- and it's not even the funniest track on the album. But from the more obviously humorous moments to the slow blues of "Easy Rider," Judy Henske transforms into a kind of distaff Howlin' Wolf, and then she's a saloon singer doing an irony-laced rendition of Irving Berlin's "Ace in the Hole." Henske walks and sings through several layers of the human psyche, neatly poeticizing and encapsulating the nature of alcohol dependency "Cocktail Hour" and those who feed off of it "Lowlife" -- and between them seems to have the makings of a musical version of The Iceman Cometh -- and telling of the relationship with her pet and companion "Song About My Dog", which is so beguilingly simple and alluring that it would make a perfect single if they still issued singles and there were any radio stations that might ever play it. And "Tell Old Bill" is a traditional song sung and played by Henske on banjo and Graham Nash on harmonica in an earthy, honest way, unaffected and unpretentious, that Henske ought to have been doing when she was with the Whiskeyhill Singers -- if one didn't know the reason, here would be the answer as to what Dave Guard saw and heard when he brought her into the group. The entire album is a sort of Crosby & Nash alumnus reunion, between the presence of Henske's husband, Craig Doerge, at the piano, and Lee Sklar, Russ Kunkel, Norton Buffalo, et al.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/22/2005
  • Label: Fair Star Music
  • UPC: 692324839321
  • Catalog Number: 8393

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Big Fat Man (3:16)
  2. 2 Easy Rider (5:24)
  3. 3 Ace in the Hole (3:56)
  4. 4 Cocktail World (5:25)
  5. 5 The Ballad of Seymour Cray (5:09)
  6. 6 Song About My Dog (3:34)
  7. 7 Tell Old Bill (3:29)
  8. 8 Duncan and Brady (3:27)
  9. 9 Maurice Maurice (3:22)
  10. 10 Fairweather Friends (3:53)
  11. 11 She Sang California (4:20)
  12. 12 Western Wisconsin (4:22)
  13. 13 Lowlife (4:40)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Judy Henske Primary Artist, Banjo, Ukulele, Vocals
Buddy Blue Dobro, Guitar, Jew's Harp, Background Vocals
Graham Nash Harmonica
Norton Buffalo Harmonica
Bradford Cobb Background Vocals
Jody Cortez Drums
Craig Doerge Organ, Synthesizer, Bass, Guitar, Piano, Electric Guitar, Keyboards, Background Vocals, fender rhodes, Guitar (Tremolo)
Dominic Genova Bass, Acoustic Bass
Bob Glaub Bass, Electric Bass
Richie Hayward Drums
Don Heffington Drums
Russ Kunkel Drums
Greg Leisz Guitar
Rick Marotta Drums
Jimmy Powers Harmonica
Lee Sklar Bass, Bass Guitar
Fred Tackett Acoustic Guitar
Dave Stone Bass
Sam D. Bass Electric Guitar
Technical Credits
Judy Henske Arranger, Composer, Adaptation
Irving Berlin Composer
Bradford Cobb Engineer
Craig Doerge Composer, Audio Production
Dan Garcia Engineer
George Mitchell Composer
Bob Salcedo Engineer
Jerry Yester Composer
Dave Marsh Author
Gavin Lurssen Mastering
James Dempsey Composer
Traditional Composer
Sven Erik Seaholm Engineer
Patsi Bale Cox Liner Notes
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Legendary Queen of the Beatniks Delivers A Beaut!

    I search for music that makes me pull over on the side of the road and listen--it's so arresting that I can't drive or talk. This is one. Blues and folk, great songwriting that does not fit neatly into any box--she is such an original. The voice, burled and rich, is huge, whether she is singing a brash, bawdy blues like "Duncan & Brady", or a poignant, catch- in-your-throat family remembrance like "Western Wisconsin." (Judy is originally from Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin.)It's no wonder Janis, Mama Cass, Cher and Bette Midler took a big page from style and sound of Judy Henske. She is the real deal- & a REAL writer.Listen to "Cocktail World." If that isn't the best saloon song since " Lush Life," I'll drink my hat. Craig Doerge is a great piano player and arranger--he was the keyboardman behind Jackson Browne and Crosby.Stills & Nash. Here he totally serves the song. If it's whorehouse piano that is needed, there it is. He can rock, he can glide, he can swing, he can surrey.What a combo they are.

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