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Close-Up, Vol. 2 - People & Places

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The Close-Up series allows Suzanne Vega to revisit her catalog and record her songs the way she hears them today. This mostly means stripping down the songs that were once electronically over-enhanced, like the timeless and gorgeous “In Liverpool,” and rebalancing the subtle beauty of her classic “Luka,” allowing the pathos of the song to soak in without excessive rock intrusion. “Tom’s Diner” is given a cool laid-back interpretation where an organ and some acoustic bass carry the backing tracks. “Zephyr & I” keeps up a folk-rock pace. “New York Is a Woman” adds sweet orchestration to her subtle observations. “Calypso” shows off how her voice has lost none of its flight over the years. “The Man Who Played God” is a new tune she wrote with Danger Mouse and the late Mark Linkous of Sparklehorse, proving Vega still looks to the future. It’s just that she’d like to set a few things from her past straight while doing so.


Born: July 11, 1959 in Santa Monica, CA

Genre: Pop

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

Suzanne Vega was the first major figure in the bumper crop of female singer/songwriters who rose to prominence during the late '80s and '90s. Her hushed, restrained folk-pop and highly literate lyrics (inspired chiefly by Leonard Cohen, as well as Lou Reed and Bob Dylan) laid the initial musical groundwork for what later became the trademark sound of Lilith Fair (a tour on which she was a regular). Moreover, her left-field hit single "Luka" helped convince record companies that folk-styled singer/songwriters...
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