Pros: Norah Jones style is welcome escape from the frenzy of everyday life.
Cons: The music becomes boring half way through the album.
The Bottom Line: Despite the fact that I can only listen to half of Come Away With Me at a time, the album remains in my collection.
Original Release Date: February 26, 2002 Genre: Popular Label: Blue Note Records Number of Discs: (1)
When Norah Jones burst upon the music scene back in 2002 I didnt quite know what to make of the dark-headed beauty with the slightly unorthodox vocal style. On the one hand she wasand isamazingly pleasant to look at, but on the other her voice hadhasa tendency to bore me with prolonged listening. Its not that her voice isnt pleasantat firstits that Norah tends to sing in only one octave, which over time grates on the nerves.
This has been a pretty consistent theme on all of her albums, starting with 2002s Come Away With Me, released by Blue Notes Records.Come Away With Me is hard to define musically, but I suppose if I had to classify it I would call it a (at times sensual) cross between traditional soul and folk music. The album sold a phenomenal 20 million copies worldwide and garnered (6) Grammy Awards, including Best New Artist, for Brooklyn born Jones.
Lyrically there is nothing earth shattering new to be found within the words of Come Away With Me; there is nothing be said here that has not been said countless time before, though I will admit sometimes Norah says it a bit differently. Musically, the album is a good mixture mellow tones that leave a pleasant enough after-taste on my musical pallet. To her credit Jones plays the piano throughout the CD, though she only wrote two songs on the album: track No. 5 Come Away With Me and track No. 12 Nightingale, and collaborated on one: track No. 13 The Long Day Is Over, which she wrote with Jesse Harris. Harris also played guitar on the CD and wrote (4) songs: track No. 1 Dont Know Why, track No. 6 Shoot The Moon, track No. 9 Ive Got To See You Again, and track No. 11 One Fight Down.
Jones sings all of the song is the same laid back, relaxed cadence that lends itself to casual listening. That is perhaps what endears the artist to so many; the message is her music is light-hearted for the most part, non-threatening, and a-political to say the least. In other words there is nothing heavy here, just the usual banter about hearts and love; even talk of sex sung in muted phrasing. No doubt Ms. Jones represents an escape from the frenzied shock-to-the-senses way of life we all seem to be leading. Norah Jones and her music is the calm in the storm, the oasis in the desert, the sweetness in the salt.
I too am swept up in Norahs mellow musical web, at least for a short time. I still enjoy track No. 1 Come Away With Me, despite its prolonged air play when it was first released as a single. The message in the music was a bit befuddled, but the overall effect was and is soothing and enjoyable. The next three tracks do nothing for me really, but track No. 5 Come Away With Me has a simple lyrical beauty that speaks to the poet in me. Jones paints a wonderful picture of love and human togetherness all wrapped in a sensual vocal delivery that makes my soul smile.
Track No. 7 Turn Me On brings a little whimsy and sexual banter to the table. Sung in the same octave as the rest of the songs on Come Away With Me Jones could have injected a little more sensuality into the number, but alas from this point I start to lose interest in the album; it takes on a been there, done that tone that leave my mind and soul wanting and wandering in search of an emotional connection.
Despite the fact that I can only listen to half of Come Away With Me at a time, the album remains in my collection, because I do enjoy it albeit in small doses.
1. Don't Know Why 2. Seven Years 3. Cold, Cold Heart 4. Feelin' the Same Way 5. Come Away with Me 6. Shoot the Moon 7. Turn Me On 8. Lonestar 9. I've Got to See You Again 10. Painter Song 11. One Flight Down 12. Nightingale 13. The Long Day Is Over 14. The Nearness of You
I first saw Norah Jones on Saturday Night Live. She performed the now, smash-hit "Don't Know Why". After hearing her perform, I went out the next day and immediately bought the CD. For only hearing one song, I must say that the CD WASN'T what I expected at ALL! It was MUCH, MUCH better and a truly pleasant surprise. I really don't know how to categorize Miss Jones as she is jazz, country, pop, blues, & R&B all wrapped up in a beautiful package. I liked all the songs on the disc, especially since … more
I don't normally take my music instructions from weekly newsmagazines, but when both TIME and Newsweek this week had articles about Norah Jones and her debut CD, I felt I should purchase it. That was a very wise decision on my part, for both my wife and I thoroughly enjoyed this collection. My wife feels that her voice is "mellow", but I prefer using the word "smokey". She has a mixture of song styles on this CD, and she does well in all of them. Considering her age, I feel sure that she is only … more
It is not just the timbre of Norah Jones's voice that is mature beyond her 22 years. Her assured phrasing and precise time are more often found in older singers as well. She is instantly recognizable, blending shades ofBillie HolidayandNina Simonewithout sounding like anyone but herself. Any way you slice it, she is a singer to be reckoned with. Her readings of theHank Williamsclassic "Cold Cold Heart" andHoagy Carmichael's "The Nearness of You" alone are worth the price of the CD. Jones's own material, while not bad, pales a bit next to such masterpieces. They might have fared better had she and producer Arif Mardin opted for some livelier arrangements, taking better advantage of brilliant sidemen such asBill Frisell, Kevin Breit, andBrian Blade; or if the tunes had simply been given less laconic performances. Jones has all the tools; what will come with experience and some careful listening to artists like J.J. Cale and Shirley Horn is the knack of remaining low-key without sounding sleepy--sometimes less is not, in fact, more.--Michael Ross