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NANCY WILSON: TODAY - MY WAY/NANCY – NATURALLY EXPANDED EDITION (CAROLINE/SMR)
Miss Nancy Wilson. That name magics up the best there is: she’s an unrivalled stylist, a singer with a voice that embraces, delivers and sumptuously sizzles with the whole gamut of emotions known to the world. She was, and still is, one of the most influential singers of our age. And here we have a pair of double delight albums from the mid-sixties, lovingly produced for re-issue thanks to the coupling of Caroline Records and SoulMusic Records. Influenced by the likes of Ella Fitzgerald and Dinah Washington, the teenager Nancy fulfilled her ambition to sing on local television. After graduating, she joined the beckoning jazz circuit and, frankly, never looked back. Her star studded career is far too heady to mention here because the lady has worked with artists of considerable note, has been honoured with countless awards, including Grammies, and sold millions of records establishing herself as a sell out performer wherever she appeared. Anyway, our journey here begins with “Reach Out For Me”, as familiar as a pair of well worn shoes, into “Welcome Home”, deep in emotion, until “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’” is presented in a more mellowed fashion than The Righteous Brothers’ million seller. A crisp, almost chirpy ”Don’t Come Running Back To Me” chugs along with double vocals, leaving “Love Has Many Faces” to drift along in an uptempo waltz mood. A sultry “If I Ruled The World” is precise; no frills as one supposes the song demands.

Nightclub blues with “In The Dark” changes the mood, almost sleazy and ‘get-down’, which is in total contrast to the mid tempo brass introduction for “Since I Fell For You” which almost skulks along. The drawn out notes on “I Wish I Didn’t Love You So” are a bit disconcerting against a wailing sax, leaving tracks like “Ain’t That Lovin’ You” to raise the sound to a more upbeat level. The two CDs are naturally different in styles, portraying Miss Wilson as a most versatile vocalist, easily slipping from one genre to another without missing a heartbeat. Now, that’s what I call an iconic performer!

Rating: 10


About the Writer
Sharon Davis ran the Four Tops fan club before spearheading Motown Ad Astra, catering for all the Motown acts, where she edited the in-house magazine TCB. Was publicist for Fantasy, Stax and Salsoul before joining Motown Records in London. Formed her own press/promotion company Eyes & Ears, worked for Blues & Soul magazine and website, and became a full time author and researcher. To date Sharon has written eleven books (her last A Girl Called Dusty published by Carlton Books) and she’s working on her next - Divas Of Motown. As a researcher, Sharon assisted Diana Ross with her autobiography Secrets Of A Sparrow, and is now in constant demand for her knowledge about Motown and its artists.
  
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