John Stewart / Buffy Ford

Live at the Turf Inn, Scotland

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Buffy Ford, John Stewart's wife, has accompanied him on his albums frequently, singing backup and harmony vocals, but she has gone more than 25 years since being co-billed on an LP. That would be 1968's Signals Through the Glass, the last Stewart/Ford album before 1996's Live at the Turf Inn, Scotland, which was recorded November 4, 1994, at a tiny club in Dalry, Scotland, before an audience of about 100. Stewart accompanies the duo on 12-string guitar, and Ford adds some percussion. The set list is a good collection of highlights from Stewart's solo career (only "Cody" comes from Signals Through the Glass), plus some traditional songs that give Ford a chance to take the lead vocals. There are also a few new Stewart originals, including the story-song "Monkey Boy" and the anthemic "Sing My Heart Away." Ford's light soprano is a good complement to Stewart's throaty, formal tenor, and she adds color to these stripped-down arrangements, making this a good way for Stewart fans to reacquaint themselves with some of his better material and a good introduction to those who have not followed him until now.

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