Minnie Riperton - Come To My Garden
Audio CD: March 31, 2003
Label: Aim Records
Recorded at Ter Mar Studios, Chicago, Illinois on November 24-26, 1969
Bitrate: 224 kbps
1969's COME TO MY GARDEN is Minnie Riperton's debut solo album, recorded after her tenure with the psychedelic soul outfit Rotary Connection but still produced and co-written by that group's leader, Charles Stephney. The heavy rock aspect of that band is absent here, replaced by lush orchestrations and a jazzy soft-pop feel that complements Riperton's magnificently expressive, multi-octave voice beautifully. The songs, mostly by Riperton and husband Richard Rudolph, are mostly minor-key ballads, with alternately sorrowful and poetic lyrics. The singer/songwritery results recall early albums by Roberta Flack as well as the contemporary work by Riperton's future employer/mentor Stevie Wonder, but the album was a couple of years ahead of its time and so was not a commercial success. Regardless, it's a quiet gem.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
This is the collaboration of two great talents who are unfortunately no longer with us: Minnie and Charles Stepney. Stepney's gorgeous production of jazzy bossanova and lush strings are a perfect fit for Minnie's angelic voice. The songs are at once romantic, dramatic, engaging, relaxing, joyful, and sweetly sad...similar to Bacharach, but different. The best way I can describe this sound is progressive easy listening -- but even that's unfair. This is music that is a far cry from Minnie's later hit-driven work. It is music to come home to relax to. It is music to chill out to with a special one. It is music to challenge your way of thinking ( the trippy lyrics ).
When I first heard this album I was with my special one on a rainy weekend we had together. It was a perfect soundtrack to a perfect time. But even apart from that personal association, "Come To My Garden" is a timeless piece of work that belongs in your collection. ~ Peace Botha
When I initially listened to this disc I was impressed by the lush production by Charles Stepney but was confused because it sounds nothing like Minnie's later work. Then I read the liner notes from her PETALS - GRTS HITS cd and discovered that she wanted a sound like the great Dionne Warwick/Burt Bacharach collabo and then I got it.
For fans of Minnie Ripperton's work, this would be an excellent addition to your collection because it again displays her complete artistry as a singer. Her singing is effortless & beautiful without any hint of melisma that's so prevalent in today's r&b music.
My favorite tracks: WHENEVER, WHATEVER ( love the horn solo & overall georgeous arrangement ); LES FLEUR; ONLY WHEN I'M DREAMING ( has a bossa nova arrangement during the intro that just sucked me into the whole song ); CLOSE YOUR EYES AND REMEMBER and EXPECTING. ~ Geminigirl
Minnie Riperton is One of My All-time Favorite Artists Ever. Her Voice still gives me Chills to this day. Together here with Charles Stepney everything comes together as one. I really Miss Her. She went away so Young. What a Vibrant & Very Talented Human Being. How I Wish Mariah Carey would follow the Blue-Print of Minnie. These songs are another indication of the Soul, Warmth & Personality that Minnie Riperton Brought to Music. RIP to Her & Charles Stepney who Co-Produced My All-Time Favorite Group The Elements Earth, Wind & Fire. ~ mistermaxxx
Minnie Riperton - vocals
Also: Phil Upchurch, Ramsey Lewis, Maurice White
Minnie Riperton - Come To My Garden Tracks:
01 Les Fleur
03 Come to My Garden
04 Memory Band
05 Rainy Day in Centerville
06 Close Your Eyes and Remember
07 Oh, by the Way
09 Only When I'm Dreaming
10 Whenever, Wherever