Unjustified Bias against Country Singers?

Hometown Girl (1987) 1987, but good sound.
Shooting Straight in the Dark (1990) Yet another good MCC album
Come On Come On (1992) Possibly her best album, but only by a little bit. She really doesn't have any bad albums
A Place in the World (1996) A great recording, but seems a bit more light-weight than her others.

(Note: all US press except Come On Come On. I haven't listened to the others yet)

Blurb: Started off as a country singer, albums usually contain songs that could be classified as 'folk' and now 'pop'. Has a relatively full-bodied voice, the type that hi-fi systems find easier to image :) Useless fact: of the above, no.1 and no.3 spell her name with the hyphen, no.2 and no.4 have no hyphen.

I only heard of MCC as 'Shawn Colvin's good friend'. Also, Time reviewed Shawn Colvin's A Few Small Repairs along with MCC's A Place in the World. A testimony to her lack of popularity in Singapore, I couldn't find A Place in the World though A Few Small Repairs was everywhere (and Shawn Colvin was also relatively unknown). The only album I found was Come On Come On and so I bought it. As I had my rather coloured Quad 77 amp, it thrust the relatively forward vocals all the way into the listener's face. This made Come On Come On rather unlistenable and I 'blamed' the recording for it. Of course, now I know better, and I find that all of MCC's albums have superb sound.

I recall reading an article about MCC which describes her music well. It went something like this: There are 2 opposed groups of MCC fans. The first group like her fast paced songs and tolerate her slower introspective songs as the occasionally musings of a musical genius. The second group likes her slower songs and tolerates as fast songs as necessary to generate sales and airplay. Myself, I like both.

But like many, I can't help but be amazed as how she is able to switch between and be comfortable in different styles of music. Further, she writes her own songs. Her faster songs contain wonderfully infectious tunes, and are 90% of the time 'fun songs', though in her earlier careere, she wrote the brilliant Stones in the Road about life in the turbulent 60s. But it appears that the audience for country demands light-weight topics for fast songs. For her slow songs, brilliant works such as The Moon and St. Christopher and I am a Town come to mind.

To offer some balance, I suppose that in the context of country, there is a limited amount of topics you can write about, though of course, you can add twists to it. Coupled with MCCs prodigious output, you can't help but feel that some songs echo each other. For example, I can hear shades of I am a Town in some of her earlier songs. However, I take the view that its OK to go back to an older song and try and improve it.


Definitely listen to Come On Come On. If the vocals seem stuffed in your face, blame your hi-fi system :)