12 Songs, 50 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Veteran R&B singer Bettye LaVette can sing anything she chooses, and on Thankful N' Thoughtful, she does just that. Producer Craig Street made no genre off limits and never demanded LaVette revert to R&B form. Instead, Bob Dylan's "Everything Is Broken" turns into a noirscape littered with dirty blues guitars and echoed rhythms. Just as producer Daniel Lanois recast Bob Dylan and Emmylou Harris as downtown hipsters (or is that uptown sophisticates?), Street gives LaVette a new playground of sound. The Black Keys' "I'm Not the One," Ewan MacColl's classic "Dirty Old Town" (in two versions, fast and slow), Sly Stone's title track, Tom Waits' "Yesterday Is Here," and Neil Young's "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" are brought together as songs with a touch of blues and rock 'n' roll. There isn't anything Ms. LaVette can't sing, and she finds new twists and turns in everything she approaches. The deluxe edition adds three bonus tracks, including a touching read of Paul Simon's "Old."

EDITORS’ NOTES

Veteran R&B singer Bettye LaVette can sing anything she chooses, and on Thankful N' Thoughtful, she does just that. Producer Craig Street made no genre off limits and never demanded LaVette revert to R&B form. Instead, Bob Dylan's "Everything Is Broken" turns into a noirscape littered with dirty blues guitars and echoed rhythms. Just as producer Daniel Lanois recast Bob Dylan and Emmylou Harris as downtown hipsters (or is that uptown sophisticates?), Street gives LaVette a new playground of sound. The Black Keys' "I'm Not the One," Ewan MacColl's classic "Dirty Old Town" (in two versions, fast and slow), Sly Stone's title track, Tom Waits' "Yesterday Is Here," and Neil Young's "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" are brought together as songs with a touch of blues and rock 'n' roll. There isn't anything Ms. LaVette can't sing, and she finds new twists and turns in everything she approaches. The deluxe edition adds three bonus tracks, including a touching read of Paul Simon's "Old."

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