An odd Japanese collection, Whisper for You reissues one of the New York cabaret singer's rarer sessions, 1970's That's Just the Way I Want to Be, and adds nine songs from her 1958 Verve LP Give Him the Ooh-La-La. Though the schmaltzy title and cover (featuring a sleepy kitten) may deter vocal fans, anyone wanting to hear one of her only post-'60s records available on CD would do well to search this one out. Blossom Dearie adapted pretty well to the changing times, stretching out on atmospheric songs that sound familiar to any fans of singer/songwriter or folk-rock forms. The title-track opener of That's Just the Way I Want to Be is a good start, her own composition (one of nine here, most of them collaborations) and one that nicely illustrates her outsider status -- a plus, as far as rock audiences were concerned. Brian Gascoigne's floating arrangement makes good use of vibes and flute, and his charts wisely stay out of the way, except on one dated arrangement for Dearie's "Long Daddy Green" (it has the same muddy sound as the spots for Schoolhouse Rock, which Dearie contributed to). Elsewhere, Dearie finds common ground with Joni Mitchell ("Both Sides Now"), and also sings tributes to (presumably) her favorites among British rock singers, "Sweet Georgie Fame" and "Dusty Springfield" (both probably owed small debts to her as well). The nine tracks tacked onto the end, from her Verve date Give Him the Ooh-La-La, far outshine any from the later session, including "Just One of Those Things" and "Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea."
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AllMusic Review by John Bush