Judy Collins

Trust Your Heart

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As she explains in her concurrently published autobiography, also called Trust Your Heart, Judy Collins concluded her nearly 24-year contract with Elektra Records on December 31, 1984. Her next recording affiliation was a one-off venture with the British Telstar Records label, which had her make an album of inspirational songs for the 1985 holiday season, named after her re-recording of one of her hits, Amazing Grace. That LP was released only in the U.K., so when Collins next signed to the startup Gold Castle Records label in the U.S., she opted to employ some of its tracks, along with a few new recordings, for this album. Amazing Grace had 16 songs on it, and Collins has selected seven of those, to which she has added two of her own compositions, "Trust Your Heart" and "The Life You Dream," plus her cover of the song "Moonfall" from the 1985 Broadway musical The Mystery of Edwin Drood. The effect is to assemble a fairly typical Judy Collins album, which Amazing Grace was not. Much of the earlier album's spiritual/religious quality remains, however, though Collins makes that more ecumenical and less specifically Christian in the religious references in "The Life You Dream." And, even for an artist not known to rock out very much, this is one of her softest collections, even when she's not being backed by the United Kingdom Symphony Orchestra and the Trinity Boys Choir, as she is on the British hymn "Jerusalem." Her own songs are characteristic piano ballads, and "Moonfall" seems intended to be the "Send in the Clowns" or "Memory" of this set, though the song does not rise to that quality. Except for the three new tracks, this is not an album on which Collins is discovering or introducing otherwise unfamiliar material, as she typically does; instead, she is applying her lovely voice to good songs often known in renditions by others, such as Bette Midler's "The Rose" or Cat Stevens' "Morning Has Broken." Thus, she comes off more as a conventional interpretive pop singer than usual.

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