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The Best of the Buddah Years (Remastered)

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Album Review

Barbara Mason's Buddha years spanned from 1971 to 1975 and represented a growth period from a wet-eyed soprano to a mature, throaty-singing, bodacious woman. While not as arresting to some as her teary breakout Artic Records sides, these were stellar waxings by a talented singer who had a unique way of phrasing lyrics, and who never hesitated to reveal the fragility of her mental being or often-bruised heart. The 14 tracks include an update of "Yes I'm Ready," complete with monologue, the scandalous (for the times) "Shackin' Up," and a bourbon/gin special "You Can Be With the One You Don't Love" that will have you reaching for a bottle. There's a fair share of he-say, she-say dramas: "Betty Crutcher" and Lester Snell's "From His Woman to You," Norma Toney's "So He Is Yours Now," a long salty version of Billy Paul's "Me and Mrs. Jones" (revised as "Me and Mr. Jones"), and Mason's self-written dilemma, "Caught in the Middle."

Customer Reviews

Bobby Bee on Miss Barbara Mason

I guess you could dub her the "Belle of Southern Soul" . She's been doing it that long and that well!! "Shackin' Up", "Yes I'm Ready" and the immortal "Bed & Board", for starters, nuff said?


Born: August 9, 1947 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: R&B/Soul

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

An interesting minor soul performer, Barbara Mason initially focused on songwriting when she entered the music business in her teens. As a performer, though, she had a huge hit in 1965 with her self-penned "Yes, I'm Ready" (number five pop, number two R&B), a fetching soul-pop confection that spotlighted her high, girlish vocals. One of the first examples of the sweet, lush sound that came to be called Philly soul, she had modest success throughout the rest of the decade on the small Arctic label,...
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The Best of the Buddah Years (Remastered), Barbara Mason
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