Thursday, 24 May 2012

The Artists - Jean Carn (Jean Carne)

Jean Carn went by many names. Born Sarah Jean Perkins, She changed her name to Jean Carn when she started recording music, only later to add an e under the advice of a numerologist.

One thing didnt change though; She has a beautiful voice; it has a five octave range. Her interpretive and improvisational skills were second to none. In fact, it was so good, she was in her church choir at the age of 4. Yep, 4. She could play instruments too; The piano, the clarinet, and the bassoon, mastering all three.

She was first noticed by a little group named Earth Wind and Fire to whom she provided uncredited vocals on their first 2 LP's. She went on to work with Norman Conners and Michael Henderson
before she was signed to Gamble and Huff's Philadelphia International Records; her debut album in 1977 Jean Carn merged the best of '70s soul and jazz with solid songwriting and tight instrumental support (MFSB, Instant Funk). The debut single "Free Love" was a hit and in 1978, her second album for the label, Happy to Be With You, was released. It included the single "Don't Let It Go to Your Head.", in my opinion one of the greatest soul records recorded.

Carn's third Philadelphia International album When I Find You Love was produced by Dexter Wansel, Gamble and Huff, and Jerry Butler. It included the great "My Love Don't Come Easy" and is considered to be one of her best LP's. She then switched to the subsidiary TSOP imprint for her final outing for them, released in 1981, Sweet and Wonderful. It included a duet featuring Glenn Jones.

Carn moved to Motown Records in 1982, making her label debut with the album Trust Me, but a scheduled follow-up LP was canned and is reportedly in the vaults, following Ms. Carn's leaving the Motown roster. Her career continued, recording the like of Closer Than Close (produced by saxophonist Grover Washington Jr), You're a Part of Me (produced by Nick Martinelli), and the  Love Lessons album.

Carn has worked with some of the most prolific soul artists, producers and songwriters over the years, including Dizzy Gillespie, Norman Connors, The Temptations, Glenn Jones, the late Phyllis Hyman, Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff, Earth Wind and Fire, Grover Washington and more. She has a great musical CV that spans Soul, and Jazz, and disco, which had to be celebrated with an Artists mix from the Mixtape.

Enjoy, Im back with new music next week, Grizz will be with you on Monday.

The Soul Mixtape Presents - The Artists - Jean Carne

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