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Bryan Ferry: These Foolish Things

Album Reviews:

Q (12/99, p.158) - 4 stars out of 5 - "...Ferry had learned his standards at his Auntie Ethel's knee and they form the spine of his solo work....[His] rarefied voice invests the covers with an eerie combination of sarcasm and tragedy..."

Album Notes

Personnel: Bryan Ferry (vocals, piano); John Porter (guitar, bass); Phil Manzanera (guitar); Eddie Jobson (violin, keyboards, synthesizer); Roger Ball (alto & baritone saxophones); Ruan O'Lochlainn (alto saxophone); Malcolm Duncan (tenor saxophone); Henry Lowther (trumpet); David Skinner (piano); Paul Thompson, John Punter (drums); Robbie Montgomery, Jessie Davis, The Angelettes (background vocals).

Producers: Bryan Ferry, John Porter, John Punter.

Recorded at Air Studios, London, England in June 1973.

All tracks have been digitally remastered using HDCD technology.

Wildly controversial in its day, Roxy Music frontman Bryan Ferry's first solo album now seems more eccentric than groundbreaking; more one man's oddball take on an eclectic bunch of his favorite artists' songs than an ironic manifesto of a new pop order. Rock purists, of course, were outraged. How dare Ferry implicitly maintain the esthetic equivalence of Bob Dylan ("A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall," complete with gospel backup singers and thunderstorm effects), with teen angst queen Leslie Gore (an unabashedly camp version of her classic "It's My Party")?

Although Bryan Ferry's mannered, tremulous vocals are better suited for his own romantically bruised lounge lizard songs, he obviously connects with these tunes on a personal level. THESE FOOLISH THINGS contains many instances, most notably on the title track and Smokey Robinson's "Tracks of My Tears," where Ferry transcends his vocal limitations and comes up with his own foppish, but still valid, version of the blues.


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