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Sings John Fogerty/Change In The Weather

Janiva Magness

Blue Elan Records 2019

Review by David Bowling

 

Janiva Magness has built her reputation as an excellent rock and blues vocalist who mainly sings her own material. So it was a bit of a surprise to find that her new album is one of all cover songs. She did not travel far and wide to collect her material but rather picked 12 compositions by John Fogerty.

The songs of Sings John Fogerty/Change In The Weather were chosen wisely. The well-known hit songs intertwine with lesser known material. The songs chosen also take on new depth and meanings due to a female being the lead singer.

Magness has always been an interpreter of songs, whether the words are hers or that of someone else. “Lodi” is a song that just makes you smile. Her version is smoother that Creedence’s version. Sam Morrow’s added vocals are a nice touch. “Bad Moon Rising” is a little less ominous than the original as here it is just a very good rock & roll song. “Have You Ever Seen The Rain” is a poignant take that is very modern despite its age. “Fortunate Son” is still a searing protest song, this time with a woman as the lead.

“Someday Never Comes” has tempo changes, intense vocals, and a message of generational failure. “A Hundred And Ten In The Shade” proves once again that simple is best and in this case beautiful. “Blue Boy” is a joyous romp, while “Lookin’ Out My Back Door” is an album ending, live in the studio, jam session.

Sings John Fogerty/Change In The Weather is an imaginative and ultimately good stop in Janiva Magness’s musical journey. She has issued an album of music worth hearing.

Rating: ****