Open Your Heart
The Andrews Gospel Singers
1963?/2005: Ola Andrews
Im over the moon at discovering that this long-overlooked treasure is at last available on CD! I grew up with this album and have acquired a vinyl copy, but I never thought Id see it come out on CD. This release is a not-quite-bare-bones transfer from vinyl, with pops and scratches off a nearly-clean master not edited out, but the power of the recordings comes through that level of imperfection. And such power!!!
Twenty thousand thanks to CDbaby.com for stocking this beauty, and to Ola Jean Andrews for having it be transferred to CD after all these years. This is a mighty, fervent, and downright gospellifying scorcher of an album. I may not be a religious person, but these girls showed me how to TESTIFY; theyre in my personal pantheon of singers whose recordings have taught me how to tap into that flow myownselfJanis Siegels another key one (especially her twirlin-it-over-her-head wild smackdown of the vocal for Operator with the Manhattan Transfer), Annie Lennox is another, Alison Moyet certainly holds her own there, and of course theres Aretha Franklin (that goes without saying).
AND my hats off to Miss Ola Jean herself, whos whipping her piano to a veritable froth with those absolutely delicious flourishes and the serious churning underneath. The piano work is much clearer on this CD transfer than on the vinyl copy I grew up with, but then the stereo system Im playing it on is in a different league to the ones I used to listen to this album on (both in my familys house and on my own before I got a decent audio setup); all of this adds up to a room-rockin celebration that even an agnostic like me can roar along with in complete accord.
Comments © 2006 Mark Ellis Walker, except as noted, and no claim is made to the images and quoted lyrics.