Monday, August 28, 2006

Ralph McTell "Not Till Tomorrow" (UK Folk 1972)

In signing Ralph McTell, already known for his song "Streets of London" and his critically acclaimed fourth album, You Well-Meaning Brought Me Here, Reprise/Warner Bros. probably was hoping for a rival to Cat Stevens -- a British folk-rock artist who could cross over to America -- as well as a complement to homegrown superstar James Taylor. And there were moments on McTell's Reprise label debut Not Till Tomorrow when he sounded a little like each of them, especially on "First Song." But the album revealed an artist uncomfortable with his growing renown, unlikely to spend much time in the States, and more interested in local concerns. Pulling back from the string settings that had characterized the ambitious You Well-Meaning Brought Me Here, producer Tony Visconti (who had contributed some of those string charts) recorded McTell alone with his acoustic guitar or piano, adding only occasional instrumental colorings. And McTell, who had turned You Well-Meaning Brought Me Here into a concept album with big subjects, turned inward and wrote about much smaller matters, many of them pastoral English topics like "Nettle Wine" and the childhood reminiscence "Barges." All in all, his American record company would have been justified in concluding that he was too English to have stateside appeal and not likely to want to go after it anyway. Not Till Tomorrow was McTell's first album to chart in the U.K., presaging a commercial rise that would culminate with the singles success of a re-recorded "Streets of London" in late 1974. In the U.S., the album passed unnoticed, and though McTell remained contracted to Warner Bros. until the end of the 1970s, the label never again released one of his albums in America, an injustice both to the artist and his potential audience. ~ William Ruhlmann, All Music Guide


Anonymous Anonymous said...

lizardson, great post.
i was about to start a series of ralph mctell posts.

let me know which ones your gonna put up and maybe i'll fill in the blanks


28 August, 2006 22:19  
Blogger Lizardson said...

Thanks jason

No other titles here.
please post anything about Ralph McTell.

BTW, check following URL for great LP artworks.
(inc. Robin & Barry Dransfield,
Gary & Vera Aspey...etc)


28 August, 2006 22:36  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, you guys are great-- thank you for celebrating excellent folk music with everyone.

29 August, 2006 01:08  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great one!!!!!
Thank you very much for this!!!

31 August, 2006 06:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi - you must have a wonderful collection. I have been searching for this album for about 20 years - would it be possible to repost. Thank you.

17 May, 2007 18:35  
Blogger Barbara said...

I am in heaven with these Ralph McTell postings.
Thank you so much!

21 May, 2007 00:20  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrilled by any Ralph McTell postings.

21 May, 2007 00:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for this one, for me it was one of his best. I probably still have this on vinyl at my parents house.


21 May, 2007 03:19  
Blogger Dylan Macnab said...

Great collection.

Check out:

14 February, 2010 19:38  
Blogger Christian Perla said...

Hello. I can't see the link for donwloading Ralph McTell's "Not Till Tomorrow". Can you re-post it please?
Thanks in advance!

13 December, 2014 12:15  

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