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Review: Iris DeMent

DigiTrad:
I'LL TAKE MY SORROW STRAIGHT


Related threads:
Lyr Add: When My Morning Comes Around (DeMent) (7)
Chords Req: Letter to Mom (Iris DeMent) (2)
Free preview of new Iris DeMent album (12)
Iris DeMent (36)
Lyr Req: Easy's Getting Harder Every Day (DeMent) (3)
Lyr Add: The Shores of Jordan (Iris DeMent) (4)
Chord Req: Let The Mystery Be (Iris DeMent) (4)
Iris DeMent's birthday (5 January 1961) (5)
Chord Req: Hotter than Mojave in My Heart (DeMent) (2)
Lyr Req: Sweet Is the Melody (Iris DeMent) (10)
Lyr Req: Our Town (Iris DeMent) (12)
Lyr Req: Our Town (Iris DeMent) (7)


ballpienhammer 24 Oct 02 - 08:39 AM
Naemanson 24 Oct 02 - 09:22 AM
Jim Krause 24 Oct 02 - 11:33 AM
Alice 24 Oct 02 - 11:42 AM
Joe Offer 24 Oct 02 - 12:43 PM
bill kennedy 24 Oct 02 - 12:51 PM
Kim C 24 Oct 02 - 12:54 PM
Declan 24 Oct 02 - 01:03 PM
Alice 24 Oct 02 - 01:13 PM
Don Firth 24 Oct 02 - 01:15 PM
Don Firth 24 Oct 02 - 01:20 PM
John MacKenzie 24 Oct 02 - 02:37 PM
Kim C 24 Oct 02 - 03:01 PM
John MacKenzie 24 Oct 02 - 03:02 PM
dorareever 24 Oct 02 - 03:20 PM
catspaw49 24 Oct 02 - 03:27 PM
Alice 24 Oct 02 - 03:33 PM
dorareever 24 Oct 02 - 03:49 PM
GUEST,Dale 24 Oct 02 - 03:58 PM
bill kennedy 24 Oct 02 - 04:02 PM
Mudlark 24 Oct 02 - 04:05 PM
dorareever 24 Oct 02 - 04:17 PM
Alice 24 Oct 02 - 05:11 PM
DonMeixner 24 Oct 02 - 05:26 PM
Alice 24 Oct 02 - 05:30 PM
DonMeixner 24 Oct 02 - 05:35 PM
Alice 24 Oct 02 - 07:10 PM
michaelr 24 Oct 02 - 09:13 PM
ballpienhammer 24 Oct 02 - 11:29 PM
bflat 24 Oct 02 - 11:59 PM
Naemanson 25 Oct 02 - 08:46 AM
Peter T. 25 Oct 02 - 09:03 AM
GUEST,bnemerov 25 Oct 02 - 09:38 AM
GUEST,boromir 25 Oct 02 - 11:16 AM
dorareever 25 Oct 02 - 11:25 AM
GUEST,bbc at work 25 Oct 02 - 11:40 AM
Ivan 25 Oct 02 - 02:54 PM
Alice 25 Oct 02 - 03:11 PM
ballpienhammer 25 Oct 02 - 06:18 PM
catspaw49 25 Oct 02 - 06:41 PM
ballpienhammer 27 Oct 02 - 06:43 PM
Arkie 21 Sep 05 - 12:16 AM
open mike 21 Sep 05 - 02:23 AM
mooman 21 Sep 05 - 05:28 AM
akenaton 21 Sep 05 - 05:39 AM
John MacKenzie 21 Sep 05 - 05:58 AM
Beer 21 Sep 05 - 08:14 AM
Dave Hanson 21 Sep 05 - 09:02 AM
kendall 21 Sep 05 - 09:22 AM
GUEST,DB 21 Sep 05 - 09:43 AM
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Subject: Review: Iris Dement
From: ballpienhammer
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 08:39 AM

Infamous Angel arrived Wed. Very very nice music! What a voice!


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Naemanson
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 09:22 AM

I bought mine last month and love it.

Let The Mystery Be is my new theme song. Too many people don't want to wait for the surprise ending and try to figure out what is waiting for them after this life is done. I'll wait to see what is there, if anything, and not use up my limited lifetime trying to second guess the creator (if s/he really exists).


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Jim Krause
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 11:33 AM

I've always liked that song, too.

Jim


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Alice
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 11:42 AM

Let the Mystery Be is a good song... I just wish Iris would not push her voice up into her nose. If she just would sing with a more open sound, even Alison Krause has learned to do that, then it wouldn't make me cringe to hear her. Sorry, folks, but listen carefully and you will hear that a good voice is being crammed through her nose.


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Subject: Songs of Iris DeMent
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 12:43 PM

I can't use thread grouping to cross-index songs that are mixed in with information that does not pertain to Iris DeMent. I'll use this message for indexing those songs.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: bill kennedy
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 12:51 PM

this came out in 1992, right? It was her first release, loved a couple of her songs in particular, gave her lots of airplay. It is amazing how different her speaking voice is compared to her singing voice, I guess I've come round to wondering what she'd sound like if she just sang. Reminds me now of a female Dwight Yoakem.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Kim C
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 12:54 PM

Alice, I'm with you. I think she's a fabulous songwriter but I can't stand the whining.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Declan
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 01:03 PM

So its not just me !

I first heard Iris at the Cambridge (UK) Folk Festival about 7-8 years ago and had to leave half way through because I couldn't take the sugar-coated voice any longer. She was there again this year and I had the same reaction, although I enjoyed it when she came on to do some duets with John Prine.

I love "Our Town" when Kate Rusby sings it, so its the singing rather than the songs that get to me. Nanci Griffith used to have a similar effect on me at one stage, but she wasn't anything like as "sweet" as Iris. In Nanci's case I got over it and I now like her singing, but I'm not sure I'll ever feel that way about Iris.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Alice
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 01:13 PM

I don't get "sweet" from her voice, Declan, maybe this is a language difference... what she is doing with her voice I would describe as "extremely nasal" ... I cringe and change the channel.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Don Firth
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 01:15 PM

Barbara and I were avid watchers of the Northern Exposure television series. Roslyn, Washington, the town that played Cicely, Alaska, is up in the Cascade Mountains just east of Snoqualmie Pass (major ski area). It's an easy ninety-mile drive from Seattle and we've been there a number of times. Maurice's big log house was built and owned by Jim and Marge Hathaway, friends of ours (they got paid fairly well for the use of their home), and seeing a place we've actually been in was a kick! A couple people we know were fairly regular extras, and we could sometimes spot them in the background in The Brick or on the street.

After getting to know these weird and wonderful people for a number of years, along comes the inevitable last episode. In the last couple of minutes of the show, as everyone is going home and Cicely was shutting down for the night, one hears Iris DeMent's voice singing Our Town. The song was a perfect ending for the series, and it was definitely puddle-up time. We'd never heard it before and thought it must have been written for the show, which, it turned out, it hadn't. But it could hardly have fit better.

We have the CD. I also subscribe to Let The Mystery Be. Good song!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Don Firth
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 01:20 PM

I do have to agree, however, that she'd sound a lot better if she didn't sing through her nose.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 02:37 PM

Having taken the words of the song about the grand Ol' Opry as autobiographical, and having listened to the track her Mother sings, it is obvious that her singing style is rooted in the whiney gospel tradition. I still love her singing, however I can see it would get to some people. I too first came to Iris thro Northern Exposure, [It wasn't the same after Rob Morrow went, and don't you just love Marylin!] The song that really fills me up though, and I don't quite know why, is the title track. I thought of her as country, and looked in WalMart for her under that classification, finally found her in Borders in Hanover NH under folk. Not at all what I would call it.
Failte....Giok


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Kim C
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 03:01 PM

I loved Northern Exposure. My TV got stolen back then, though, so I missed the last two years of it. :-(


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 03:02 PM

Moving pictures Kim?
Giok*BG*


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: dorareever
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 03:20 PM

I just started to listening to her music,I like her very very much! Lots of energy!!
And a good voice,not whiny pseudo-folkie girlie voice,but a real voice.I always like that in a woman...and..well,she is really good.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: catspaw49
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 03:27 PM

I think we talked some about the Northern Exposure thing on another thread and I too agree that it was the perfect song for a beautiful ending to the series.

As far as Iris goes, well........I have no taste, so I kinda' enjoy that voice. I know it really grates some people badly which I can understand, and yet, there is something of the old-time whine and twinge there that I like. Please put away those bricks.

Now iffen y'all really want to get into the strange voice thing, then you need to hear Iris and John Prine doing duets! Geeziz, what a pair of voices to try to put together. There are a couple on one of his latest albums, where he pairs with quite a few people. But even more enjoyable for me was an episode of Sessions at West 54th where she and JP did a lot of the songs that had been done by others on the album. The duets were big country hits for folks like George and Tammy, Loretta and Conway, etc. You have got to hear Irsi and JP doing "We're Not the Jet Set."

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Alice
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 03:33 PM

Good songwriter - bricks still thrown her way for the voice!!! (Don't you just love freedom of speech.)


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: dorareever
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 03:49 PM

Alice,I so like her voice! because I hate pretty voices I guess...they're soo new age...I want to shoot Enya and everybody who has this ethereal voice thing...some of them are good,but imperfect voices are better for me.Now,a perfect and full of energy voice would be the best,but it's so rare.It's all McKennitt-ish stuff.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: GUEST,Dale
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 03:58 PM

From the Iris DeMent website ~~ Infamous Angel (Released January 16, 1992 on Philo/Rounder and May 25, 1993 on Warner Brothers Records).

Now not to brag (OK, a little bit!) but MY copy is Philo/Rounder 1138, making me one of her earliest fans, other than those who were fortunate enough to hear her before her recording career began.   I can't say EXACTLY when I got it, probably Spring or Summer of 92, but I do remember everything else, the where was St. Louis, and my favorite record dealer, Dennis said, "Here's one I think you'll like."

He was right, and not to take issue with anyone, but her voice has an old time charm that puts her above most of the rest.   My list of people that I can't stand to listen to is long enough that I have no room to complain. I expect revealing my prejudices would evoke howls of dismay from those artists' faithful followers.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: bill kennedy
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 04:02 PM

I too was taken with her voice at first, have had that cd since '92 as well. When I first heard her speak, and realized how different her speaking voice is from her singing voice, how 'false' and 'studied' and 'put on thick' her singing voice now seems to me, not at all like her mother's singing voice on the same cd. but she writes a good song, and too each his own


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Mudlark
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 04:05 PM

I guess I'm in the too-nasal camp...great songs, grating voice. But I was amazed to find out that she sang Pretty Saro in Songcatcher...to my ear didn't sound like her at all, and much closer to the country voices I heard in the Ozark mountains...nasal thing less pronounced and more natural, somehow.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: dorareever
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 04:17 PM

I don't speak in a nasal voice,but sometimes my voice comes out nasal,when i sing,but it's my real voice...obviously her speaking voice is different from her singing voice,I never heard someone with the same speaking and singing voice.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Alice
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 05:11 PM

A tradition I dearly love, Irish sean nos singing, has a natural nasal quality to the singers, but what Iris Dement is doing is not natural old time sound. Her hard pushing up into the sinus doesn't sound natural, it sounds like something she developed as a bad habit and just doesn't know how to stop. Pretty sound is not the point I'm making.... there is a nasal hard push that is very contrived about her singing, not a natural old style sound. Maybe I'll find a sound file link to compare and post later to explain better what I mean.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: DonMeixner
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 05:26 PM

I had heard that Iris had the song dubbed in song catcher. IMHO I find her voice to be the perfect platform for her often perfect songs.

Don


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Alice
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 05:30 PM

Comparison - the natural old ballad singing voice of 72 year old Phyllis Marks in West Virginia NPR Heritage Center Click here (Spaw, don't go berserk when they mention Songcatcher) Phyllis Marks has the natural uncontrived, unaffected voice that has a natural nasal quality. Dement ... not.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: DonMeixner
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 05:35 PM

:-PPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPPp

Iris is also better looking.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Alice
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 07:10 PM

Maybe the sound sample of Phyllis Marks wasn't the best way to compare and describe what I mean... but anyway, this thread title says review, and for my part such a pushed and affected nasal sound gets a thumbs down. I think she has a good voice inside... I just wish she wouldn't distort it.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: michaelr
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 09:13 PM

I'm with you, Alice... that vocal affectation drives me up the wall; did so in Songcatcher, as well.

Her male equivalent has to be Jimmie Dale Gilmore, I can't stand him either. Those two together would make the perfect duet, though (shudder)!

Cheers,
Michael


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: ballpienhammer
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 11:29 PM

I first heard her on WCBU#3 doing "Mama's Opry". I don't mind the
nasal voice. I feel her voice is perfect for bluegrass and folk alike.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: bflat
Date: 24 Oct 02 - 11:59 PM

I absolutely enjoy her performance live and recorded. She is unique. She happens to be quite talented with the guitar and piano and a most humble performer. Love her.

Ellen


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Naemanson
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 08:46 AM

I like her voice. It is disctinct and unique. If she learned to "correct" it then she would only be left with her words to distinguish her from the rest of the thundering herd of singer songwriters. And face it, gang, that's a big herd.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Peter T.
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 09:03 AM

"When My Morning Comes Around" is my favourite. So simple. yours, Peter T.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: GUEST,bnemerov
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 09:38 AM

I like her singing as well. That said. the first time I heard her I told a companion, "listen, it's Olive Oyl singing."


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: GUEST,boromir
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 11:16 AM

I find that if you listen for heart, Iris sings as well as Luciano. And isn't that what listening is all about!


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: dorareever
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 11:25 AM

If Luciano is Luciano Pavarotti,she sure sings better! he almost lost all his voice and everytime he sings with popstar the popstar sings better,can hold the note...he can't anymore!


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: GUEST,bbc at work
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 11:40 AM

Iris has a very unusual voice. Duane loves to listen to her. I can't stand to; her voice grates on me. Male/female thing?

bbc


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Ivan
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 02:54 PM

I love Iris's voice. It reminds me of the original Carter Family and others of that era.
The last thing we need is for voice coaches to take over folk music. Let people sing how they like.
I know it's a shame if some voices grate so much that you can't bear to hear them under any circumstances (Rod Stewart for one!) but if the songs are good other people will cover them in a different style anyway.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Alice
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 03:11 PM

It's not a natural bluegrass/old time voice. She's doing something affected to it that makes it sound like a caricature of bluegrass. The fact that she isn't letting her natural voice sing in an old style is my whole point!


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: ballpienhammer
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 06:18 PM

I like it!


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: catspaw49
Date: 25 Oct 02 - 06:41 PM

LOL....Keep up the good fight Alice my old friend......You're losing and also probably right..a tough situation, but I know you will continue to persevere......LMAO

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: ballpienhammer
Date: 27 Oct 02 - 06:43 PM

the wife says Dement sounds like Sandy(the squirrel) on Sponge Bob.
Obviously she is not a Dement fan!


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Subject: Iris DeMent
From: Arkie
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 12:16 AM

Iris DeMent was in Mountain View this past Saturday night. First time I had ever seen her perform and actually she did not perform.   She sang and accompanied herself on guitar and piano. It was a wonderful evening of sensitive, beautiful music. I am glad to have been one of the chosen ones.
I moved this message here from another thread on the same topic.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: open mike
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 02:23 AM

the song mentioned above, although sung by Iris,
was written by Mr. Iris Dement (Greg Brown)
(The Train Carrying Jimmie Rogers Home)

and I love her voice, her songs, and
her strength of conviction, especially
in the song Wasteland of the Free..
it is potent stuff.

the Let the Mystery Be is a great song..
sort of an asnostic anthem of sorts!!


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: mooman
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 05:28 AM

Probably I have no taste at all but I (and also the Good Lady McMoo) personally love her songs and voice and we have a couple of them in our repertoire.

Peace

moo


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: akenaton
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 05:39 AM

I am always mystified as to why Iris and her music are rarely discussed here.

I think she's wonderful and agree with Open mike about her conviction and the emotive content.

I love all her stuff but "Easy's gettin' harder every day" and "Walking Home" give me the "sniffles" and make me marvel at her understanding.....Ake

BTW    I dont "sniffle" easily.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 05:58 AM

I mentioned her before on a thread and found she either attracts loving or loathing, my other half can't stand the sound of her voice, but then she does have strange taste in men too;~)
For me Iris Dement can do no wrong, and albeit a bit overplayed I still love Our Town.
Giok


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Beer
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 08:14 AM

What a powerful voice. I heard Tom Russell being interview and he used the word "Haunting voice". I have to agree. As you probably know she is featured on Tom's folk opera c/d "The Man From God Knows Where".


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 09:02 AM

Most irritating voice in music.

eric


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: kendall
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 09:22 AM

I can listen to her and enjoy her for about two songs. Then that little girl quality irritates me.


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Subject: RE: Review: Iris Dement
From: GUEST,DB
Date: 21 Sep 05 - 09:43 AM

Iris DeMent is in the film 'Songcatcher' and, if my memory serves me right, sings the trad. song 'Pretty Saro'. I remember being completely blown away by that performance - just completely knockout! Does anyone know if she has recorded any more traditional songs?


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