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Site NiR

Film, art, books

and modern life  

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Noir contains frequent references to the United States. It's certainly in the music.

If we're going to be a French noir site, we had better keep this in mind. We have chosen our American musician. She is TRACY NELSON (Click for discography). We choose Tracy as our chanteuse because she is a very, very strong blues singer, who can sing all kinds of songs. Her songs can be wonderfully liberating. The fact that she is not a household word also makes her an excellent choice.

Through the 1960s, she fell out of the San Francisco music scene -- as she notes in the song, "Goin' back to Tennessee" after some very gospel-tinged work with Mother Earth. She recorded some very fine music. She remains a powerful blues singer. Her voice is not raspy, like Joplin's was. It is big. Her songs can be awfully touching, as well. Songs like "When I Need You Most of All" are folky classics. It is her blues, and the fact that she is somewhat idiosyncratic, that makes her our choice. We need to keep in mind that we're noir. Therefore, we will continue to listen to Tracy Nelson, almost to the point of obsession. The CD, "Sweet Soul Music" is a good start. (Click title). There is also a 1996 album backed up by Bonnie Raitt, Maria Muldaur, Phoebe Snow and The Memphis Horns, in addition to Delbert McClinton, Mike Henderson and Al Kooper, who have been her studio mates in the 90s, "Move On." You can preview the songs by clicking on these titles.

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