RANDY CRAWFORD: The Best Of (Rhino/Warner UK)

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Randy Crawford broke through in 1979, furnishing the fiery vocal on the Crusaders’ ‘Street Life’. Before that though she’d worked with people like Cannonball Adderley, Bootsy Collins and George Benson and that grounding was to stand her in good stead as she forged a successful post-Crusaders’ career. Over the years that career has yielded a succession of hits and a number of artist-defining songs and they’re all collected here on this new “best of “set.

Everything you’d expect is here – ‘Street Life’, ‘You Might Need Somebody’, ‘Last Night In Danceland’, ‘You Bring The Sun Out’ et al. There’s also the jaunty ‘Secret Combination’ and Ms Crawford’s lovely take on Tony Joe White’s ‘Rainy Night In Georgia’ . It was (indeed still is) almost as poignant and tear-jerking as Brook Benton’s classic version. It shows that when it comes to exploring grief, the Georgian soulstress has few peers. Other tracks include a gentle take on ‘What A Difference A Day Makes’, a live version of ‘Imagine’ and ‘Dimante’ – a duet with Italian singer/guitarist Zucchero.

In truth there have been lots of Randy Crawford compilations in the past. Every home should have one …. and if yours is lacking – this is the one to go for. The album comes complete with a scene setting essay from SJF’s very own Charles Waring and what’s more we’re offering you the opportunity to win a copy of the album. Simply go to our news pages and enter the competition. There are five copies of ‘The Best Of Randy Crawford’ up for grabs…. but be quick, the closing date is August 5th, the release date of the album.

(BB) 4/5