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Song for Juli

Jesse Colin Young

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Album Review

Although it was his fourth solo album, Song for Juli was Jesse Colin Young's first full-fledged effort under his own name, following a couple of early folk records, a series of Youngbloods albums, and the tentative Together. Young organized a versatile backup band in which piano, violin, and horns complemented his tenor voice in arrangements that recalled Van Morrison's Caledonia Soul Orchestra (no surprise, since Young and Morrison used several of the same musicians, notably reed player Jim Rothermel) and featured familiar blues, country, and Cajun elements. In his lyrics, Young hewed closely to the current back-to-the-land philosophy, celebrating his family life (Juli is his daughter) and his "Ridgetop" retreat in Marin County, CA. It was a viewpoint that was both self-affirming and xenophobic — you couldn't help thinking that the people he wanted to leave him alone and the tourists he wanted to keep at bay included at least a few of his listeners. Of course, that's not the way it was thought of at the time, and Young's fans responded strongly to Song for Juli, giving it a higher chart placing than any album the Youngbloods ever made and keeping it in the charts longer than any album he ever made. (Originally released in September 1973 as Warner Brothers 2734, Song for Juli was reissued as Ridgetop Music 1105.)

Biography

Born: 22 November 1941 in Manhattan, New York, NY

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Jesse Colin Young got his start as a folksinger in Greenwich Village coffeehouses in the early '60s, releasing two major-label albums, The Soul of a City Boy (April 1964) and Young Blood (March 1965). He met guitarist Jerry Corbitt in Cambridge, MA, and with keyboardist/guitarist Lowell "Banana" Levinger and drummer Joe Bauer, they formed the Youngbloods, initially playing in the jug band, good-time style of the Lovin' Spoonful. Signed to RCA, they released their debut single, Corbitt's "Grizzly...
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Song for Juli, Jesse Colin Young
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