“It’s My Way” by Buffy Saint-Marie - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1964Album Chart of the Decade: 1960s

TJR says

Buffy Saint-Marie was still in her early 20s when her debut LP was released in February, 1964. From the off, she's world-weary beyond her years, feeling the pain of the displaced (“Now That the Buffalo's Gone”), the drug-addict (“Cod-ine”), those who die in vain (“The Universal Soldier”) and the screwed-over (“The Incest Song”) to name but just a few! Throughout, she's a powerful, believeable and likeable presence, with a trembling vocal which conveys real emotion, none more so than on my own personal favourite, “Babe In Arms”, on which a pregnant mother laments her ne'r do well other half and his roving, drinking lifestyle: “And were it not for this wee baby, Well, you know what I’d do, Ooh, to my fine man, Ah, don’t you know, I’d shoot him and put an end to his life of sin.”.

Hard-hitting lyrics are a feature of the album, and it's the lyrics to the opener - her signature song - which stay with you long after the album's faded away:

The governments now want the Navaho land That of the Inuit and the Cheyenne It's here and it's now you can help us dear man Now that the buffalo's gone

Buffy thought that you could say anything you want to say in the land of the free. That myth was soon shattered for her when she found herself blacklisted by Lyndon B. Johnson's regime who were effective in pressuring radio playlist makers and record distributors to suppress her voice. Almost without fail, I find that such suppressed voices are worth hearing. This brilliant and thought-provoking debut lends heavy weight to the theory. Go Buffy go!

The Jukebox Rebel

A1 [02:45] 8.2.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - Now That The Buffalo’s Gone [album version ’64] (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
A2 [03:55] 8.4.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - The Old Man’s Lament (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
A3 [02:35] 8.3.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - Ananias (Traditional) Folk
A4 [01:19] 7.2.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - Mayoo Sto Hoon (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
A5 [05:01] 7.5.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - Cod’ine (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
A6 [01:45] 6.5.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - Cripple Creek (Traditional) Folk
A7 [02:15] 8.0.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - The Universal Soldier (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
B1 [02:30] 8.8.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - Babe In Arms (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
B2 [04:35] 6.9.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - He Lived Alone In Town (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
B3 [02:45] 7.4.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - You’re Gonna Need Somebody On Your Bond (Traditional) Folk
B4 [04:11] 7.2.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - The Incest Song (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
B5 [02:16] 6.9.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - Eyes Of Amber (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk
B6 [03:29] 7.2.png Buffy Sainte-Marie - It’s My Way (Beverly Sainte-Marie) Folk

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