Chad Mitchell Trio

Reflecting

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The first Chad Mitchell Trio release of 1964 was self-consciously political and somewhat downbeat. The album opens with "Barry's Boys," a now-dated political piece that was controversial when it was released. This piece, along with a cute throwaway song by Shel Silverstein, and the wonderful version of Tom Paxton's "What Did You Learn in School Today" are the only humorous pieces on the album. The rest of Reflections is highly varied and includes a sweet Caribbean religious song, an Elizabethan ballad, and a pair of songs from the Second World War. The highlight of the album, and a clue regarding why the rest of the release might have a somewhat somber mood, is the closing medley of "In the Summer of His Years" and "Rally 'Round the Flag." This album was recorded just after the assassination of President Kennedy, and the combination of the song commemorating his life and death with one written just after the assassination of President Lincoln was an inspired decision. It is no wonder that several songs on this album are expressions of grief, as the Chad Mitchell Trio reflected their times in song, and those times had just been marred by tragedy. Modern listeners experiencing this album for the first time will find much to respect in the expressive vocals and good song selections throughout the album, but may find that other albums by the group are more enjoyable. Note: This was the group's last release as the Chad Mitchell Trio. Subsequent releases were under the name the Mitchell Trio.

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