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Julie Christensen (from the album The Price We Pay for Love available on Firebird Records) (by Lee Zimmerman)
Julie Christensen is a musician with a storied past. She’s released five solo albums, helmed her own Nashville-based band, Stone Cupid, and served as a founding member of the Roots Rock ensemble Divine Horsemen. In addition, she toured frequently with Leonard Cohen in addition to sharing stages with, among others, Todd Rundgren, Iggy Pop, Van Dyke Parks, k.d. lang, John Doe, and Exene Cervenka.
If that seems like a diverse mix, suffice it to say, that verve and versatility has also impacted her own efforts. The Price We Pay for Love, as its title implies, finds her in the role of a seductive chanteuse, mostly mining songs from other artists and rendering them with own signature style. Granted, there are no major stylistic leaps or sound barriers to break, but Joni Mitchell’s “Hejira”, Jimmy Webb’s “The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress”, and a take on “Can’t Find My Way Home” by Blind Faith offer opportunity for rediscovery courtesy of Christensen’s soothing and seductive interpretations. Her soulful singing is consistent throughout, from the nocturnal musings of “Save Your Love For Me” and “A Remark You Made” to the quiet, contemplative delivery that marks “Goldbridge Road” and the pensive approach that defines “How He Lost Her”, one of two original co-writes. Her measured tones and evocative allure, combined with the soft, subdued arrangements, connect in unexpected ways, drawing the listener in with both passion and purpose.
That said, the highlight of these proceedings comes with “All the Rivers”, a Christensen co-composition that brings to mind Blue River-era Eric Andersen, early Joni Mitchell, and Eva Cassidy in equal proportion. It’s moving and memorable, and an ideal example of Christensen’s ability to crystalize her emotions and share those sentiments with her listeners. Credit is also due to producer, bassist, and arranger Terry Lee Burns for his clear and concise contributions and the skill he shows when it comes to supporting — and elevating — Julie Christensen’s delicate delivery. His efforts are a major reason why this album succeeds so admirably. As a result, one might consider The Price We Pay for Love an ideal example of a consummate collaboration.
(by Lee Zimmerman)
Listen and buy the music of Julie Christensen from AMAZON
For more information, please visit the Julie Christensen website
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