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Sweet Nuthin's (Rerecorded Version) [Live]

Brenda Lee

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Album Review

This 16-track collection lacks too many key sides to be considered the perfect introduction to Brenda Lee, but what's here may be revelatory to casual listeners who only know the singer as a teen idol; Lee was much more than that. Working with Nashville producer Owen Bradley, Lee, along with fellow Bradley protégé Patsy Cline, was perfect for country and pop crossover appeal, and all of her '60s work perfectly straddles the two genres. Sometimes the approach didn't work (Lee's orchestrated version of Hank Williams' "Jambalaya" is a fish out of water if ever there was one), but when it did work, like on the edgy, rockabilly-tinged "Sweet Nothin's," the results were impossible to resist. Lee's singing oozed personality, and her big ballads like "All Alone Am I" and "I'm Sorry" manage to sound intimate and sincere even while surrounded by huge, orchestrated arrangements. This isn't a bad set, but there is simply more to the story than what is presented here.

Biography

Born: 11 December 1944 in Lithonia, GA

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

One of the biggest pop stars of the early '60s, Brenda Lee hasn't attracted as much critical respect as she deserves. She is sometimes inaccurately characterized as one of the few female teen idols. More crucially, the credit for achieving success with pop-country crossovers usually goes to Patsy Cline, although Lee's efforts in this era were arguably of equal importance. While she made few recordings of note after the mid-'60s, the best of her first...
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Sweet Nuthin's (Rerecorded Version) [Live], Brenda Lee
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