San Sebastian Strings/Rod McKuen/Anita Kerr —
For Lovers ... LP Reprise, 1969. Near Mint- ...
An amazing document of adult love – as important to the easy generation as Barry White's work was to the soul crowd – and the kind of record that makes you willing to throw away all your prejudices about Rod McKuen! The set's got a simple, snakey sort of approach – one that uses electric bass underneath light string arrangements by Anita Kerr – in a way that has the same sexy, slinky appeal as some of the best mellow easy from the end of the 60s – that period when the genre had firmly shaken off the mood music audience of housewives, and was hitting a younger, lustier crowd on the FM airwaves. There's a compressed perfection to this album that's beyond belief – not just in Kerr's sublime arrangements, but also in the incredible interpretation of McKuen's writings by Joey Benson – spoken into the microphone in a way that makes a simple whisper speak volumes, and which has this breathy, Bacharach-era brilliance that's dripping with mature sexuality. McKuen's words are presented beautifully by Benson – given just the right pauses, phrasing, and power to unlock a playfully illustrative sense that doesn't always come through in other collaborations with Anita Kerr. A real lost treasure – the kind of record we never expected we'd ever like at all – but which has held us rapt with its brilliance – almost a Scott Walker for the American easy crowd of the late 60s! Titles include "Foreign Movies", "Why I Follow The Tigers", "Love Hasn't Any Windows", "Make A Bigger Circle With A Softer Touch", "For Lovers", "No Loving Without Losing", and "Looking Up Through Wednesday's Silence". (Now Sound, Comedy)LP, Vinyl record album