1. Hold on Tight (2:37)
2. Goin' Out of My Head (2:51)
3. Secret Love (3:07)
4. I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face (2:26)
5. What the World Needs Now (2:42)
6. The Inch Worm (2:50)
7. You've Got Your Troubles (2:31)
8. Sweetness Is My Love (2:37)
9. What Now My Love (2:12)
10. Dear Heart (2:20)
11. Who Am I? (2:31)
12. Sleep Away (2:00)
The final commerical album by Jamie and the J. Silvia Singers finds them again matched with Sinatra arranger Don Costa and taking on a collection of modern classics. As a whole, this is a much better collection than Jamie and the J. Silvia Singers, although the swing jazz backgrounds of the J's with Jamie albums are again sacrificed for a '70s-contemporary big band sound.
Wisely, this time, Jamies voice is back at the front of the mix. You'll even get a solid sense of the group's past triumphs on "What the World Needs Now" and "The Inch Worm," the latter of which would be the best recording of this song, if the charmingly offbeat Odd Couple version didn't exist.
Someone thought an electric guitar would be a good idea on "Hold on Tight." It's not, and that's thankfully not an ELO cover.
Again, no copyright, but the cover of Anthony and the Imperials "Goin' Out of My Head" dates this past 1964. This album followed Jamie and the J. Silvia Singers, and there's something about the mix and arrangements, a self-conscious attempt at creating the "oldies" sound that haunted AM radio, that leaves me thinking this was released after 1968.
That forced band sound winds up being the only distraction. The vocals and harmonies are much tighter here, but the backing music gets in the way at times. The producers just can't figure out what they want this album to be. It's aiming for a young audience with popular covers while still trying to please the elderly AM fans of the day with "beautiful music."
Fortunately, the group is able to rise above these background music and production meanderings. You'll find a new favorite or two among this set, though it will leave you nostalgic for the Columbia recordings.
As always, my thanks go out to Jim Maroney for the excellent transfers and album art scans.