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Just Family

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Album Review

Even though Just Family was produced by Stanley Clarke and employs a lot of musicians who had jazz backgrounds — including Chick Corea, George Duke, Airto Moreira, and Bobby Lyle — this is an R&B album first and foremost. Dee Dee Bridgewater would return to jazz in a major way in the 1980s, but in the late 1970s, she was emphasizing adult-oriented R&B and going after fans of artists like Phyllis Hyman and Minnie Riperton. The strongest tracks on this LP, which was recorded when Bridgewater was 27, range from the playful title song and the Earth, Wind & Fire-ish "Children Are the Spirit (Of the World)" to the dreamy "Sweet Rain" and an emotional cover of Elton John's "Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word." Also noteworthy is the Brazilian-influenced "Night Moves," a Michael Franks tune. Those who know Bridgewater for her hard-swinging jazz CDs of the 1980s and 1990s should be warned that Just Family isn't a jazz album at all. It must be judged by R&B standards, not jazz standards — and from an R&B standpoint, Just Family is generally decent, if unspectacular and uneven.

Customer Reviews

Love this album!!!

I've also been waiting for this album. Thank you iTunes. I remember this from high school and it still sounds great!

One of my favorite Jazz recordings

I have loved this recording from the time it was first recorded .....I too looked for it for many years after getting rid of the album..... finally came across an old tape recording......thx for putting it on iTunes......good to have again. She blows out Maybe Today and Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word......I LOVE the entire Set but those two songs just blows me away......what a range of vocals !!!!

It's about time!

I've been waiting for i-tunes to load this album forever. My mother used to play this album -a straight classic- when I was a kid. Dee Dee as a jazz chanteuse is fine, but I always think of this album when I hear her name.


Born: May 27, 1950 in Memphis, TN

Genre: Jazz

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

One of the best jazz singers of her generation, Dee Dee Bridgewater had to move to France to find herself. She performed in Michigan during the '60s and toured the Soviet Union in 1969 with the University of Illinois Big Band. She sang with the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis orchestra (1972-1974) and appeared in the Broadway musical The Wiz (1974-1976). Due to erratic records and a lack of direction, Bridgewater was largely overlooked in the jazz world by the time she moved to France in the '80s. She appeared...
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Dee Dee Bridgewater

Just Family, Dee Dee Bridgewater
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Customer Ratings