Various Artists

Listen to the Music: '70s Females Singer

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The best volume of the '70s singer/songwriter Listen to the Music series. This has less nightmare mellow archetypes (although there's some of that as well), and is more inclined toward serious, dignified statements. There are some expected dentist-office staples here (Joan Baez' "Diamonds and Rust," and Karla Bonoff's "Someone to Lay Down Beside Me"), as well as the mammoth "Poetry Man" single by Phoebe Snow. Most of the rest, however, are less clich├ęd, with quality selections by Jackie DeShannon, Emmylou Harris, Joan Armatrading, Laura Nyro (the downright brassy "Beads of Sweat"), and Melanie (the surprisingly serious "Leftover Wine"). It also stretches the time frame a bit with Buffy Sainte-Marie's mid-'60s classic, "Until It's Time for You to Go," and a Rosanne Cash cut from the early '80s, "Seven Year Ache."

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