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TEXAFRANCE - ENCORE!
Sing Out! -
Fall 2003 -
Vol. 47 #3
Christine Albert / Texafrance-Encore!
"Christine Albert is an Austin, Texas
mainstay, having started the Austin Songwriters Group, participated in
several community organizations, and acted as a mentor to Austin newbies.
She and partner Chris Gage have some eight albums still available,
including the 1992 French/English Texafrance. Her mother spoke French at
home and Christine picked it up and carried it to her regular
Texafrance-Encore! includes many well-known songs
as well as some not so well known. Each contains French and English
verses. Christineís beautiful voice carries these songs as few
American singers could although she and Gage have chosen to jazz up the
production with piano, mandolin, guitar, bass, percussion and accordion.
The net result is a 1940s bistro feel that takes some getting used to.
The sequencing also is in someway jarring, with jazzy "Coucou"
following the more sedate "La Mer" and preceding
"Mademoiselle de Paris." This roller coaster approach to song
presentation probably canít be helped given the selection of songs for
the album although it sometimes makes for disjointed listening.
These quibbles aside, each song is a
gem. Christineís enunciation is impeccable, enabling the listener to
translate the French verses and follow the lyrics in the well-designed
graphic booklet. Moreover, there are enough familiar songs that
listeners can maintain interest even if their French is less than
minimal. Overall, this is an interesting album that Christine Albert
fans are going to like very much. Edith Piaf would like it, too."