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Vicki Lawrence
"The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia:
The Complete Bell Recordings"

© Real Gone Music

April 01 - 07, 2018

Year of Release: 2014
Rating:
The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia
  • The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia
  • Mr. Allison
  • Killing Me Softly
  • Sensual Man
  • Little Green Apples
  • He Did With Me
  • (For A While) We Helped Each Other Out
  • It Could Have Been Me
  • Dime A Dance
  • Gypsys Tramps And Thieves
  • How You Gonna Stand It
    Ships In The Night
  • Mama's Gonna Make It All Better
  • Who Broke Your Heart And Made You write That Song
  • In Another Woman's Arms
  • Take Me To Heaven
  • Cameo
  • Ships In The Night
  • Funny Girl
  • Makin' Love In My Mind
  • Who Do I Call When I Need You
  • The Light On The Back Porch Door
  • You Are The Sunshine Of My Life Bonus Tracks
  • Old Home Movies
  • The Other Woman
  • I'm Glad I'm Not Her

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    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
    N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
    Born on March 26, 1949 in Inglewood, California, Vicki Lawrence is a multi-talented performer who has achieved success in television, movies, theater and music. As a young girl, she enjoyed singing and dancing, and as a cheerleader she was voted "Most Likely To Succeed" by her high school graduating class. Well, that class certainly had the gift of foresight, because Vicki Lawrence not only succeeded in show business, but she left an indelible mark in every field in which she has worked.
    Her biggest break came during her senior year in high school, when she sent her idol Carol Burnett a letter that included a newspaper article that mentioned her resemblance to Ms. Burnett. Burnett had been looking for an actress to play her younger sister on her new variety series, and the rest is television history. Vicki Lawrence became the youngest member one of television's most enduring ensemble casts, and seized the opportunity to learn from, and work alongside, her mentor, Carol Burnett. The Carol Burnett Show premiered in the fall of 1967, and Vicki Lawrence remained with the series for eleven years. During that time, she won an Emmy Award, enjoyed a No. 1 hit single on the pop charts, and created the character of "Mama" on the Burnett show, a character that would ultimately spawn a popular series of its own. Mama's Family ran from 1983 to 1985 on NBC, and from 1986 to 1990 in first-run syndication. In 1974, she married Al Schultz, who was head of CBS make-up, and together they have two children, Courtney and Garret Schultz. She hosted the daytime talk show Vicki from 1992 to 1994, and has guest-starred on numerous television series, including a recurring role as "Mamaw" on Hannah Montana.
    Vicki Lawrence is an accomplished singer. Sometimes, that fact is lost among all her other career achievements, but the fact remains that she is a remarkable vocalist who recorded some outstanding material during the early Seventies. Her recording career began in the summer of 1969, when she released her first single on the obscure Elf label. Next, she recorded another single for United Artists that also failed to chart. In 1970, she recorded a song for the soundtrack album of the movie The Grasshopper. But it was after signing with Bell Records in 1972 that Lawrence scored her biggest hit, "The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia." She recorded two albums for Bell Records, The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia in 1973, and Ships In The Night in 1974. The latter album was only released in Australia and makes it CD debut here in this outstanding new collection that collects all of Vicki Lawrence's classic Bell recordings.
    From the liner notes of The Night The Lights Went Out in Georgia: The Complete Bell Recordings


    Vicki Lawrence is best remembered on the great comedy show, The Carol Burnett Show. Hired as Burnett's "sister" for the show, she did have a striking resemblance to a young Burnett. And her, along with Harvey Korman, and Tim Conway, created a fantastic and very funny show that lasted eleven years on live television on the CBS network. But she also is part of music history, and in the #1 category -- Her song, "The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia" was originally meant for Cher, but she turned it down. Despite a few songs she recorded before 1973 were failures, she recorded two albums on the Bell label, and both of them are in this collection, with a few bonus tracks. Her two albums were The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia (1973), and Ships In The Night (1974). The latter album was only released in Australia. Both albums are here in this collection, and it is true of what was mentioned in the liner notes: Vicki Lawrence had a very good singing voice, and this collection is very enjoyable. collection of both her albums.

    The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia:
    The album starts out with the No. 1 title track, which would later become a 1981 movie, starring Dennis Quaid, Kristy McNichol, and Mark Hamill. Reba McEntire would remake the song as a Top 20 Country hit, in 1992.

    "Mr. Allison" is a nice song, as Vicki's singing voice is incredibly strong. Her remake of "Killing Me Softly (With His Song)" is on this album, yet Flack's version is the better of the two. Most of the songs in this entire collection can be categorized as "soft rock." "Sensual Man" is on these tracks, and to compare to another artist in this style, would be that of Helen Reddy. Her version of O.C. Smith's "Little Green Apples" is another "soft rock" track, and quite good.

    Not only can we label "soft rock," we can also place some of this songs in the 1970s Country. This is the case for these songs: "He Did With Me," "(For A While) We Helped Each Other Out." Helen Reddy's soft rock style comes to mind on "It Could Have Been Me." Another soft rock track is "Dime A Dance." And since her No. 1 song was meant for Cher, Vicki has a remake that was originally recorded by Cher (and Cher took this song to No. 1), "Gypsys, Tramps And Thieves." As in Vicki's remake of the Roberta Flack song, (which she, [Flack], also took the song to No. 1), Cher's original version is the better of the two. And ending the album is another soft rock/country track, "How You Gonna Stand it."

    Overall, The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia album by Vicki Lawrence, is a very good album, and her voice shines on each track.

    Ships In The Night:
    The continuing of Soft Rock and/or 1970s Country is the theme of Vicki's songs on her second Bell album, Ships In The Night. "Mama's Gonna Make It All Better" has the soft rock style, and with the next track, it's title can easily be something you would hear in Country Music: "Who Broke Your Heart And Made You Write That Song."

    Most songs that were very popular, would have a slight resemblance in other songs. (Many artists did this in the 1960s.) "In Another Woman's Arms" you can almost hear Vicki's No. 1 "Georgia." "Take Me To Heaven" could be played on Christian playlists. (After all, most Country singers either started out singing religious songs, becoming a Christian artist either before, or after their popularity in another genre.)

    "Cameo" is more of a rock and roll song, where the title track is another Soft Rock tune. More of the Soft Rock on "Funny Girl," and "Makin' Love In My Mind" is another rock and roll track. Two more on the Soft Rock side: "Who Do I Call When I Need You" and "The Light On The Back Porch Door." And another remake ends the album, Stevie Wonder's "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life" -- where her other remakes may not have been as good as their originals, yet her version of Stevie Wonder's classic is very well done, and very good.

    Ships In The Nights is a good album, yet her previous album would be considered the better one. Both albums were very well recorded, and not only was she an accomplished comedianne, being on the Carol Burnett Show, she equally excelled herself in recording music.

    Bonus Tracks:
    Three bonus tracks were included here, as "Old Home Movies" is another slight resemblance to her #1 hit, as with "In Another Woman's Arms." "The Other Woman" is another good, soft rock track, and the last bonus track, "I'm Glad I'm Not Her" blends the soft rock and country.

    Most actors/actresses attempt at singing, and almost 99% end up keeping their original jobs, that in acting. Vicki Lawrence proved otherwise. She could easily act well, and sing just as remarkable. It would have been interesting to hear her continue in music. But she will always be remembered with her work with Carol Burnett. "The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia" is still played on oldies formats, forty years later. Yet, it will be the only song you will hear in this format, that one song, by Vicki Lawrence. This collection proves otherwise, that Vicki Lawrence recorded more than just that one song she was famous for. And she can carry a tune just as any of her fellow female singers, from the 1970s: Helen Reddy, Cher, Vicki Lawrence. She could have easily persued more popularity in the Pop, Country, and even Christian. Her name may not have been as famous as the other two, but if given a chance, she just may have become as popular.




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