In My Own Time was only one of two full length albums Karen Dalton released in her lifetime. It was a tour de force full of interpretations of recent folk and blues tunes by the likes of The Band, Paul Butterfield and George Jones alongside some traditional songs. It showcases her unique neo-Daffy Duck-styled voice against some glittering folk rock arrangements featuring lashings of pedal steel and a big tablespoonful of melancholy.
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Karen Dalton was part of the Greenwich Village folk scene of the 1960s and was a favourite of Bob Dylan and Fred Neil. She also played with Tim Hardin from time to time and was one of the first to cover his song “Reason to Believe”. She died in 1993.
“In My Own Time” was originally released in 1971 and showcases her folk, blues and soul leanings as well as her guitar and banjo playing. Mournful opener “Something On Your Mind” was written by Quicksilver Messenger Service main man Dino Valenti and is perfect for her incredible voice. There are two covers on here that you may look twice at, “When a Man Loves A Woman” and “How Sweet It Is”, however, the former does suit her voice very well and she makes it her own and the latter shows her versatility – an up tempo soul number on an album of more laid back blues and folk. She does have one of those “Could sing the phone book” voices, though. “In My Own Dream” is a lilting blues number, written by Paul Butterfield. George Jones’ “Take Me” adds a bit of soporific country to the mix. Her version of The Band’s “In a Station” and the closing track “Are You Leaving for the Country” are other highlights.
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