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Jessi Colter (from the album Edge of Forever on Appalachia Record Co.) (by Lee Zimmerman)
Considered by many to be one of the queens of country music, Jessi Colter boasts a more than 50-year recording career, one that found her expanding into the mainstream market courtesy of her 1975 crossover hit “I’m Not Lisa” and her later collaboration with the man known as one of the original so-called ‘outlaws’, her husband, Waylon Jennings.
Nevertheless, it’s been six years since Colter’s last outing, which makes Edge of Forever, released mere months after her 80th birthday, all the more auspicious. A comeback of sorts, it finds Margo Price in the role of producer and contributor, which, in turn, brings a contemporary credence that’s so clearly her due. Indeed, a feeling of exuberance and enthusiasm is obvious from the outset, as reflected in the rousing revelry of the title track and the upbeat optimism of “I Wanna Be with You”, the song that follows. The fanciful finesse of “Hard on Easy Street”, the soulful stride of “Fine Wine”, and the seductive strains wafting through “Lost Love Song” — a number written by her late husband — affirm the confidence and clarity that Colter’s clearly capable of projecting.
So too, Colter is well versed when it comes to varying her emotions, with certain songs — “Hard on Easy Street”, “Angel in the Fire”, and the mournful “Secret Place” in particular — weaving a tender tapestry of expressive sentiment. There’s a hint of Blues shared in “Can’t Nobody Do Me Like Jesus” and some attitudinal adjustment taken on “With Or Without You”, each of which underscore the fact that indeed, Jessi Colter carries herself well, and in so doing, she affirms the fact that her prowess and proficiency are as unfailing as ever.
Of course, it’s no small task to find a fit with today’s radio-ready confines while keeping pace with the Americana elite all at the same time. Commercial considerations don’t always conform with a desire to retain a purposeful perspective. Happily, though, Edge of Forever makes a formidable impression, one as timeless as its title seems to suggest. (by Lee Zimmerman)
Listen and buy the music of Jessi Colter fromAMAZON
For more information, please visit the Jessi Colter website
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