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Uncover Me AUS-Import

3.5 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Feb. 6 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: AUS-Import
  • Label: Universal Music Canada
  • ASIN: B000MGUZ7K
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #13,267 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Bring The Boys Home
2. California Dreamin'
3. Peace Train
4. At Seventeen
5. Love Is A Battlefield
6. Son of a Preacher Man
7. Counterfeit Heart
8. You're So Vain
9. Downtown
10. Solitaire

Product Description

Product Description

2007 issue of the beloved Canadian singer/songwriter's first exclusive collection of cover songs. While Arden has recorded numerous covers before, this set is entirely made up of songs written by other people. The first single from the album is "Bring The Boys Home", a song originally made famous by Freda Payne (better known for her hit "Band Of Gold") that actually made it into the US Top 15. Arden also puts her personal stamp on "Peace Train", "Love Is A Battlefield", "You're So Vain", "Downtown", "Son Of A Preacher Man" and more!


Perfectly titled Uncover Me is a collection of nine cover songs and one original that allows Arden to show how emotion-driven music has influenced her along the way. The disc kicks off with "Bring the Boys Home" (originally a 1971 anti-Vietnam war song) that is especially moving with its refrain, "bring 'em back alive." The '70s hit "Peace Train" by Yusuf Islam (a.k.a. Cat Stevens) also delivers another powerful message in a gentle melody. True to Arden's musical nature, there are a handful of melancholic tracks, including the aptly wistful version of Janis Ian's "At Seventeen" and a moving, traditional take on the Carpenters' "Solitaire." The disc's one original, "Counterfeit Heart" is a definite standout of the slower numbers, one that seems awash with a '40s croon and ache. That track aside, the strongest parts of the CD come in the form of the sassy female-fronted melodies that bring out the best of Arden's style. Carly Simon's "You're So Vain," Pat Benetar's "Love Is a Battlefield," and Dusty Springfield's "Son of a Preacher Man" each allow Arden to infuse a little extra zest and oomph in her vocals. The only downside? That in choosing the songs, Arden didn't pick a number with a little more bite to it, such as Heart's "Crazy on You" or Joan Jett's "Bad Reputation," which would have allowed her to shake off the softness, if only for a while. --Denise Sheppard

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Some people like to do things the easy way. Jann Arden is not one of them.

Consider her latest disc "Uncover Me".

For many artists, a covers album is a cop-out -- a set of tried-and-true tunes tossed off to plug the gap and fatten the wallet between discs.

But not Jann. And not for want of trying, either.

The Canadian singer-songwriter reportedly cut a disc of croony standards, but scrapped it as too downbeat (and coming from ballad queen Arden, that's really saying something).

Instead, she regrouped and recorded the fittingly titled "Uncover Me", a collection of '60s and '70s pop tunes that give us a revealing glimpse into her early musical loves and influences.

Listening to her glistening pop-rock versions of classics like Janis Ian's "At Seventeen", Carly Simon's "You're So Vain", The Mamas and the Papas' "California Dreamin'" and Karen Carpenter's "Solitaire", you can picture her sitting alone in her teenage bedroom after school, strumming an acoustic guitar and singing along with her turntable.

The timeless messages of Freda Payne's "Bring the Boys Home" and Cat Stevens' "Peace Train" resonate strongly without seeming heavy-handed, while her somewhat tongue-in-cheek cover of Dusty Springfield's "Son of a Preacher Man" is just a kick.

Most of the tunes are pretty faithfully rendered, with the exception of Pat Benatar's "Love is a Battlefield", which is recast as a shadowy ballad.

But no matter the setting, everything possesses Arden's usual undercurrent of melancholy -- even Petula Clark's sugar-spun ditty "Downtown" sounds ironic and resigned in her hands.

After all, Jann knows that forgetting all your troubles and cares is easier said than done.

Lovely, sensitive, beautiful!
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Format: Audio CD
Prime Cuts: Solitaire, Downtown, You’re So Vain

To designate Arden as a one-hit wonder with her emotionally ravaging top 20 smash “Insensitive” is a caricature. Across the border on the 49th parallel, this chanteuse has been amassed with 8 Juno Awards (the Canadian equivalent of the Grammys) and she was also the receipt of the esteemed 2000 Prairie Awards Songwriter of the Year. However, for “Uncover Me,” her ninth studio album, Arden has decided to give her writing kilt a rest. Save for one newly penned tune, this album finds Arden covering a wide array of music from Cat Stevens to the Carpenters to Pat Benator to Carly Simon to Pertula Clark to Dusty Springfield. Naturally such an adventurous excursion lend itself to being one of the most vocally challenging endeavors Arden has had ever committed on record. Unable to divorce herself totally from the originals, she does vocally import Karen Carpenter’s vulnerability, Carly Simon’s spitefulness, and her own skeptical bite, making Arden a much richer composite vocalist.

If a song could cut the heart like a stiletto it has to be the Carpenters’ “Solitaire.” A probable biography of Karen Carpenter’s vacuous quest for true love, this piano-based ballad finds Arden cribbing Carpenter’s forlorn and despairing purrs with great effect. Pertula Clark’s “Downtown,” though traffics with a carefree disposition, guises an ache of loneliness where the song’s protagonist tries to forget her pain vis-à-vis window shopping. Arden’s new composition “Counterfeit Heart,” though not as melodramatic as the aforementioned tracks, is still a heart wrenching ballad of misplaced trust and broken promises to which Arden conveys with mastery.
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Format: Audio CD
Being a die-hard Jann Fann, I was rather disappointed to hear that she was doing a cover album as I- probably along with most- prefer original work, especially by my favourite singer/songwriter. But once I settled into the album, I noticed that this album still is Jann as we know her. Choosing songs that she grew up playing was a smart choice, as it allows her personality to resonate within them. Given that most of these songs were written atleast a few decades before I was born, I don't have much to compare Jann's versions to, but I can say that I really enjoy her take on them. "Downtown" had me grinning as it's a classic I love. Her arrangement of "You're So Vain" is cheeky and somehow fitting for Jann. "At Seventeen" really resonated with me, being an awkward teenager as well. "Bring the Boys Home" is likely the most powerful song on the album. The lyrics are relevant and get the right message across. It's a song of hope, regardless of your opinion on the war. If you want a more musical synposis of this album, then you should check it out yourself. As I said, Jann definitely lent her typical style to this album and it's nice to know these songs were so relevant to her.
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Format: Audio CD
Okay, if you are listening to Jann Arden's Uncover Me as your first taste of Arden, you should be impressed. She has a great, lilting voice and the covers on this album sound fine.

Unfortunately there are two glaring problems here.

First, "fine" doesn't cut it. When you are a recording artist your fans deserve more than fine. (Yes, I am a fan.)

Secondly, having seen Jann in concert, doing some amazing covers of every genre during the performance, I was expecting so much more.

The songs on this album are, knowing Arden's talents, weak. For the most part, the interpretations do not come from the heart and do some incredible songs an injustice. The vocal performances sound like an average Idol audition.

I hope Jann will do more covers in the future as I know her voice and talent is so much better than this album.
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