Stones in the Road

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Stones in the Road was an eagerly awaited album from Mary Chapin Carpenter; the runaway success of Come On Come On established her as a bona star in the country and up-and-coming AAA radio formats. For this offering, she tipped her sound down to its basics and returned to the core of her music -- namely, her folkier singer/songwriter roots. Although the lyrics are among her best and the songs thoroughly memorable and beautifully literate, Carpenter cut back on the number of hooks in her melodies, creating a palette that required closer listening to appreciate. There were no immediately radio-friendly hits to be found here -- though radio did indeed pick up on it and the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Stones in the Road was an eagerly awaited album from Mary Chapin Carpenter; the runaway success of Come On Come On established her as a bona star in the country and up-and-coming AAA radio formats. For this offering, she tipped her sound down to its basics and returned to the core of her music -- namely, her folkier singer/songwriter roots. Although the lyrics are among her best and the songs thoroughly memorable and beautifully literate, Carpenter cut back on the number of hooks in her melodies, creating a palette that required closer listening to appreciate. There were no immediately radio-friendly hits to be found here -- though radio did indeed pick up on it and the album did exceptionally well. Previously, she found a balance between the lyrical and musical aspects of her writing, walking a tightrope between words and hooks. Here, she concentrates on lyrics, giving the listener something that might require working a bit to appreciate -- but also something to hold on to. And craft never leaves Carpenter's songs; these are as finely wrought as anything she's ever done and better than most. There are uptempo tracks here, such as "House of Cards," the dreamy "A Keeper for Every Flame," the retro pop
ock sound of "Tender When I Want to Be" a song Bruce Springsteen could have written and most likely deeply influenced, the single "Outside Looking In," and the barroom rocker "Shut Up and Kiss Me." But even these are lyrically more involved than those on earlier records. The moodier pieces here include the title track, the transcendent "John Doe No. 24," and the brilliant "The End of My Pirate Days." Carpenter and producer John Jennings hired a crack band that included drummer Kenny Aronoff, keyboardist Benmont Tench, guitarists Lee Roy Parnell and Steuart Smith, and backing vocalists Trisha Yearwood, Linda Williams, and Shawn Colvin. The sound of Stones in the Road is moody and very introspective at times, but it is never less than engaging and even pleasant. This is a worthy if startling entry in Mary Chapin Carpenter's catalog.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/4/1994
  • Label: Sony
  • UPC: 074646432723
  • Catalog Number: 64327

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Why Walk When You Can Fly (3:32)
  2. 2 House of Cards (3:45)
  3. 3 Stones in the Road - Mary Chapin Carpenter (4:32)
  4. 4 A Keeper for Every Flame (3:47)
  5. 5 Tender When I Want to Be (2:54)
  6. 6 Shut up and Kiss Me (3:42)
  7. 7 The Last Word (3:36)
  8. 8 The End of My Pirate Days (5:02)
  9. 9 John Doe No. 24 (5:46)
  10. 10 Jubilee (4:36)
  11. 11 Outside Looking In (4:43)
  12. 12 Where Time Stands Still (3:40)
  13. 13 This Is Love (6:11)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Mary Chapin Carpenter Primary Artist, Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Background Vocals
Lee Roy Parnell Guitar, Slide Guitar
Trisha Yearwood Background Vocals
Paul Brady Background Vocals, Whistle (Instrument), tin whistle
Shawn Colvin Background Vocals
Don Dixon Bass
Matt Rollings Piano
Kenny Aronoff Percussion, Drums
Benmont Tench Piano, Hammond Organ
J.T. Brown Bass, Fretless Bass Guitar
Stuart Duncan Fiddle, Mandolin
John Jennings Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Guitar, Percussion, Bass Guitar, Electric Guitar, Hammond Organ, Background Vocals, Baritone, Bells, cowbell, Plucked Piano, Guitar (Baritone)
Robbie Magruder Drums
Branford Marsalis Soprano Saxophone
Alan O'Bryant Background Vocals
Steuart Smith Electric Guitar
Linda Williams Background Vocals
Jon Carroll Piano, Accordion
Linda D. Williams Background Vocals
Robin Williams Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Matt Rollings Contributor, Introduction
Mary Chapin Carpenter Composer, Producer
John Jennings Producer
Bill Johnson Art Direction
Denny Purcell Mastering
Bill Johnson Art Direction
James Saez Engineer
Bob Dawson Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I grew up with this

    Its almost impossible to seperate how it really sounds from how I remember it sounding. Its probably been ten years since I heard these songs, and I've done a lot of growing in those years - but these songs got me through some of the toughest times in my life. I got to where I could sing "Stones in the Road" in my sleep; I remember teaching my best friend the lyrics to "Why Walk When You Can Fly" on the way to school, and then finding she'd written them down in her journal years later. But my favorite song by MCC remains "Heroes and Heroines," another song on another album, one which I'll remember until the day I die.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews