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Judith Owen delivers another deeply engaging album 

click to enlarge Judith Owen, "Somebody’s Child"
  • Judith Owen, "Somebody’s Child"

Judith Owen’s impressive resumé includes a run as a key member of Richard Thompson’s “1000 Years of Popular Music” tours, but she has a formidable body of her own work. Somebody’s Child is her 11th album, and here — joined by (among others) two of the singer-songwriter genre’s finest go-to players in Leland Sklar and Waddy Wachtel — she’s made yet another deeply engaging album. Crystalline production and arrangement put the focus squarely upon Owen’s winning, emotive vocals and acoustic piano. Her strong sense of melody and knack for memorable lyrics are on display on “Send Me a Line.” Quieter moments like “Mystery” conjure a contemplative air, while the timeless feel of “Tell All Your Children” displays her gift for minimalist, understated pop. Meanwhile, a cover of Roxy Music’s “More Than This” proves that Owen’s skills as a musical interpreter rival her songwriting abilities.
File next to: Carole King, Tori Amos, Ben Folds

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