Doris – Did You Give The World Some Love Today, Baby (1970/1996)

Doris - Did You Give The World Some Love Today, Baby (1970/1996)
Artist: Doris
Album: Did You Give The World Some Love Today, Baby
Genre: Jazz-Funk, Soul, Psychedelic
Origin: Sweden
Released: 1970/1996
Quality: mp3, 320 kbps

Tracklist:
1 Did You Give The World Some Love Today Baby (3:22)
2 I Wish I Knew (2:27)
3 Grey Rain Of Sweden (02:59)
4 Waiting At The Station (3:11)
5 Don’t (3:07)
6 Daisies (2:14)
7 You Never Come Closer (4:19)
8 Whispering Pine (3:52)
9 I’m Pushing You Out (3:00)
10 Won’t You Take Me To The Theatre (2:27)
11 Beatmaker (3:35)
12 Bath (2:02)

Bonus Tracks:
13 Mama Didn’t Lie (2:49)
14 Benny Law (2:39)
15 You Made A Fool Of Me (3:07)
16 Wouldn’t That Be Groovy (2:56)
17 Don’t Let It Rain (2:43)
18 One Fine Day (3:03)
19 Flowers In The Morning (3:03)
20 What A Lovely Day (4:00)
21 Why Did You Go (2:21)
22 Go Back To Daddy (2:30)

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A vintage pop oddity of sorts, but one that’s worthwhile for its musical content at least as much as its curiosity value, the lone LP by Swedish chanteuse Doris (née Svensson) is an accomplished and somewhat offbeat collection of lush pop, soul, and light funk. Cut in 1970 with a handful of veteran Swedish jazz and rock musicians who sound completely at home playing in a variety of primarily American idioms, Did You Give the World Some Love Today Baby reveals Doris to be a singer of considerable range with plenty of personality. She’s a throaty belter on the funky, country-inflected “Waiting at the Station,” the Northern soul-styled groovers “Don’t” and “Beatmaker,” and the brassy pop-soul title tune (even coming off a bit worryingly unhinged as she exhorts “you’ve got to love the one you love/and the whole darn world as well”) — but she scales back the fireworks for sweet, if somewhat fey, ballads like “Grey Rain of Sweden” and “Daisies,” which call to mind the sophisticated songwriter pop of fellow lost gem Margo Guryan. There’s also a heartfelt, tastefully orchestrated rendition of the Band’s “Whispering Pines,” and — easily the album’s most unusual moment — the bizarre, unsettling jazz-psychedelia of “You Never Come Close,” which sounds like nothing you’d expect to hear on an ostensibly pop record from any era (it evokes something similar to Portishead’s enigmatic melancholy, or Candie Payne’s tormented retro-pop noir, several decades down the line.) Add in a smattering of upbeat big-band swing tunes — “I’m Pushing You Out” and the organ-led shuffle “I Wish I Knew” — the goofy, vaudeville-ish “Won’t You Take Me to the Theatre,” and a jaunty cover of Harry Nilsson’s “Bath,” and you’ve got a true smorgasbord — a little something for everybody, although it’s all still quite listenable as a single entity. The world may not have given Doris much love in her day, but she’s certainly comparable in terms of raw vocal ability to would-be peers like Lulu and Petula Clark — or, as the liner notes suggest, Melanie — arguably outstripping them in the adventurousness of her musical range (in a single album, no less), and is outfitted here with perfectly decent if not necessarily exceptional material. Worth rediscovering, particularly since several CD reissues have made it readily available.
Review by K. Ross Hoffman

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