From the Vault...


Minnie Riperton
"Capitol Gold: The Best Of Minnie Riperton"

© Capitol Records

Year of Release: 1993

track listing
  • Perfect Angel
  • Lover And Friend
  • Memory Lane
  • Woman Of Heart
    And Mind
  • Lovin' You
  • Young Willing And Able
  • Can You Feel
    What I'm Saying
  • Stick Together
  • Wouldn't Matter
    Where You Are
  • Stay In Love
  • Inside My Love
  • Here We Go
  • Give Me Time
  • You Take My
    Breath Away
  • Adventures In Paradise
  • Simple Things
  • Light My Fire

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    Minnie Riperton
    "Capitol Gold: The Best Of Minnie Riperton"

    Minnie Riperton was best known for her #1 hit, "Lovin' You." Showcasing her incredible high-octave vocals, it is obvious to hear how she became an inspiration to Mariah Carey. Sad to say, Riperton died at the age of 31 from battling cancer. Capitol Records' Capitol Gold: The Best Of Minnie Riperton chronicles her career with 17 songs, even from her album releases on Epic Records.

    "Perfect Angel" (written by Stevie Wonder) has a Dionne Warwick vocal quality about it, and could easily fit the New Age Jazz format. The next 3 songs have a great 1970s Soul sound, and can be compared to the very early releases of Prince: "Lover And Friend," "Memory Lane" and "Woman Of Heart And Mind," a ballad that displays her high-octave range, as most remember her from her famous hit, "Lovin' You."

    "Young Willing And Able" has the funk/disco sound, and again, can be compared to the early releases of Prince. Likewise, "Can You Feel What I'm Saying" is another funk/disco styled song, and it's possible that not only did Mariah Carey get inspiration from Riperton's music, we could say the same for Prince's early works. "Stick Together" has the common disco sound as well, and could be compared to Barry White and Donna Summer.

    Typical 1970s Soul best describes "Wouldn't Matter Where You Are," where it could have easily fit the compilation series from Rhino Records, Didn't It Blow Your Mind. It could also be mistaken as an early Mariah Carey song. "Stay In Love" is a lovely ballad, having a great 1970s Soul sound, and another early Prince-comparison. Another beautiful ballad is "Inside My Love," which could easily fit today's R&B, as it is pure classic Soul. We can also say the same for "Here We Go," as it has a touch of funk.

    "Give Me Time" is a classic -- a beautiful ballad, that could fit the jazz category. The harmonica soloist was not mentioned in the credits, but it can easily be identified as that of Stevie Wonder (my guess). You Take My Breath Away" is another funkified number, and can be compared to Earth, Wind & Fire. "Adventures In Paradise" is another upbeat funk tune as well.

    "Simple Things" has a very easy-going, simple style, and very entertaining. Somehow this song has you dreaming in the carribeans. The last song is her version of The Doors' "Light My Fire," where it has a very soulful sound, and could fit the New Age Jazz formats as well.

    It's easy to hear how Mariah Carey was inspired by Minnie Riperton's music. Her music was limited, her voice was magnificent; she has left behind a great assortment of Soul and Funk music, which will easily inspire many future stars to come. Capitol Gold: The Best Of Minnie Riperton is a fine compilation of one of the unsung heroes of early Soul music. Her music will be a treasure to discover, and endless entertaining to listen to, again and again.

    © All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Capitol Records and is used for reference purposes only.

    Previous Review: #862
    Garth Brooks--Sevens
    Next Review: #864