Norma Jean

Body and Mind

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It's fitting that the body comes before the mind in the title of Norma Jean's album Body and Mind, because her hard country cheating songs are unequivocally "of the flesh." The title track is a desolate portrait of loveless sex and drinking, and that's only the beginning of the album's expression of honky tonk despondency. "In the Park After Dark" describes a troubled affair with a married man, "Once More I'll Let You In" is about a cheating woman whose lover is also cheating on her, and "Woman Hungry" offers justification for adulterous men. The album has a few incongruous moments of levity, like "Truck Driving Woman" and a cover of the Harden Trio's upbeat hit "Tippy Toeing." "Truck Driving Woman" was a minor country hit, and the album itself made the country Top 40, but the mainstream country audience may not have been fully prepared in 1968 for this kind of liquor-soaked, self-destructive album from a female vocalist.

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