(Turtle Dove Records/Drag City)
Blonde and beautiful, exuding peaceful musings and an unguarded
air of innocence, Carol Kleyn was a free-spirited minstrel who came along too
late. Blessed with a voice that melded the soaring soprano of Joni Mitchell and
the cautionary tones of Janis Ian and Judy Collins, she sang idyllic odes
cloaked in incense, patchwork and patchouli. Utilizing harp as her principal
instrument, Kleyn conveyed a free-spirited, flower-powered approach affirmed
through sparkly, sun-dappled melodies that bow to idyllic California environs.
Sadly, Kleyn, never achieved wider recognition, making this,
her 1980 sophomore set and swansong of sorts, little more than a footnote in terms
of modern folk fare. All blithe and breezy, it’s a throwback to less harrowing
times. The sprightly, ‘60s-sounding “Jethro,” a cheery and tropical “Sailor
Take Me” and the wistful and wide-eyed “Could Be Heaven” all attest to a free-spirited
stance. Though slightly precious by modern standards, Takin’ The Time remains a gentle gem of an album, ten winsome
ballads retrieved from history’s undertow.
“Jethro,” “Could Be Heaven,” “Sailor Take Me” LEE ZIMMERMAN