To celebrate Linda Ronstadt’s birthday today, I had to spin some old favourites.
These days, Linda cannot sing because of Parkinson’s Disease. However she has given us over 30 albums of music to enjoy.
Canciones de mi Padre – I love this album (from 1987), together with Mas Canciones (1991). Both albums contain her renditions of traditional Mexican classics and ‘ranchera’ folk songs from her family heritage.
Still my favourite Linda Ronstadt albums, as much as I enjoy much of her other work – such as the 3 album set with Nelson Riddle and the collaborations with Emmylou Harris and Dolly Parton, these 2 collections of songs in Spanish, always give intense listening pleasure.
Both albums won Grammy Awards for Best Mexican-American Album.
I especially enjoy her Spanish enunciation and the tonal and emotional range of her delivery. In addition to high soprano, I love the way she stretches also her lower octaves in many of these sweet and earthy compositions.
I like it that she respectfully explains the song derivations and historically renowned versions and singers (in the sleeve notes of Canciones de mi Padre).
I enjoy also the rhythm and warmth of harmonies with her brothers, her niece and with other singers and musicians.
Technically these two Canciones productions (recording, mixing, mastering) are of ‘demonstration’ quality.
My USA vinyl copy of Canciones de mi Padre may have a little more dynamic range and ‘openness’, than my German pressing of Mas Canciones – but both are excellent.
Musical and sonic gems.