Alison Krauss: “Baby now that I’ve found you”

I haven’t quite finished Female Country Singers Week. There are two to go—one American and one Canadian.

Those of a certain age will remember listening (and dancing) to the old rock song “Baby now that I’ve found you,” released in 1967 by The Foundations. It was a huge hit, and covered by several other artists, including Donnie and Marie Osmond. But the best cover by far is this one, by the awesomely talented singer and fiddler (“fiddler” doesn’t really cover it) Alison Krauss.

Born in 1971 in Decatur, Illinois, Krauss, who often records with her group Union Station, has won more Grammys than any other living artist (27); the only musician with more is the late conductor Sir George Solti (30).

I must admit that I didn’t know much about Krauss until a few months ago, but since then I’ve been entranced by her lovely voice and her talent on the fiddle.  And what she does with the Foundations song is amazing—it’s countrified a tad and made far more melancholy. And how in blazes did she even think to redo this song?

If you want to hear the original rock version, it’s here.

31 Comments

  1. abrotherhoodofman
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

    I want to have her children.

  2. Dave Bauer
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

    Here is an amazing video with Alison Kraus and a great young star Sarah Jarosz that you might like. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHcYiOsO3a4

  3. Filippo
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    She does a wonderful version of Paul McCartney’s “I Will.”

    The same with “When You Say Nothing at All.”

    With “Baby Now that I’ve Found You,” and the above two (unless one simply has to have a Phil Spectoresque “Wall Of Sound”), to my mind there is just the right amount of inspired instrumental filagree. (Re: Gibran’s “let there be spaces in your togetherness.”) I struggle a bit to describe it. I have a vision of Debussy scoring for Bluegrass.

    • atticsttatic
      Posted July 22, 2012 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

      Agreed – her’s is actually my favorite version of “I Will”

    • Neil Schipper
      Posted July 22, 2012 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

      Thirded.

      That song was originally from a Jerry Douglas record (and later included on AK’s highly successful “Collection”). Douglas is an amazing dobro and banjo (and perhaps mandolin) player with his own solo career in addition to being a Union Station member. Many of his recordings are largely instrumental, but he sometimes includes guest vocalists.

      I’m guessing its his arrangement. One of the very charming things about it is that it starts out seeming to be a (lovely) instrumental as banjo plays the melody for a long while (a good minute, maybe two) with ever so sweet phrasing on 2 strings arpeggiated. When AK “finally” comes in on vocals its like.. “oh, it’s not a pure instrumental, and.. we’re going to a wonderful new place!”

      One can imagine Paul McCartney grinning from ear to ear upon hearing his gem reworked with such verve.

    • hotshoe
      Posted July 25, 2012 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

      I forgot that Jerry Douglas is playing the dobro with Alison’s bamd. I recognized his sound, without looking at the video, because he’s definitely one of the world’s masters of “just the right amount”.

      Maybe the most beautiful song in the world:

      Dimming of the Day, by Richard Thompson.

      Notice how wonderfully Jerry’s dobro swirls around Alison’s voice.

  4. Diego
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

    She is fantastic! For the last few years every time I go to Atlanta (which is once or twice a year) I have to play her song “Oh, Atlanta!”.

  5. Posted July 22, 2012 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

    I remember going to a Vancouver Folk Festival in about 1985 and hearing the announcer introduce a group and hearing him rave about its great 14-year-old fiddler, Alison Krauss.

  6. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

    JAC, you have fabulous taste in music.

    (But you missed the 100th anniversary of Woody Guthrie which coincided with the 150th anniversary of Gustav Klimt.)

  7. aspidoscelis
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

    I’ll take the 1967 version. Krauss’s cover leaves me cold. It’s Grammy music, all right. Way too slick.

    • Marta
      Posted July 23, 2012 at 5:21 am | Permalink

      Agree completely.

    • Filippo
      Posted July 23, 2012 at 5:36 am | Permalink

      Just to congenially clarify, do you mean that you do not consider it sufficiently loud, raucous and “edgy”?

      • aspidoscelis
        Posted July 23, 2012 at 10:18 am | Permalink

        “Edgy” works… not in the sense of challenging social norms, but in the sense of having edges. My mind needs a certain amount of roughness in music or it slides off.

    • Peter Beattie
      Posted July 29, 2012 at 8:40 am | Permalink

      This works both ways, of course: I find the Foundations version unremarkable, almost boring actually. Krauss’s version seems to me to be rhythmically and melodically incomparably more interesting. Which just goes to show that YMMV. :)

  8. Neil Schipper
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 10:49 pm | Permalink

    Perhaps, I ought not let the cat out of the bag, but I’ve often wondered why Christian apologists never play their very bestest card:

    • JonLynnHarvey
      Posted July 23, 2012 at 6:22 am | Permalink

      If more American Christians were like Allison Krauss (and fewer like Tebow), we’d be better off. I really like this kind of Gospel music. But I still shudder at “Onward Christian Soldiers” and revolt at “Drop Kick Me Jesus Through the Goal Posts of Life”.

      • Posted July 23, 2012 at 7:18 am | Permalink

        … and revolt at “Drop Kick Me Jesus Through the Goal Posts of Life”.

        … which always seemed to me to be a hilarious parody, offensive mostly to overly uptight Christians who might object to the image of the singer being booted massively in the ass by Jesus, or the righteous “who have gone on before” forming an “offensive line”.

  9. Charles Sullivan
    Posted July 22, 2012 at 11:49 pm | Permalink

    Are you descended from them country Texas Jews, or what?

  10. Duncan
    Posted July 23, 2012 at 12:36 am | Permalink

    I first heard of her when she did the Raising Sand album with Robert Plant. Once she manages to elbow her way past his ego, I think they sing very well together.

  11. Gordon
    Posted July 23, 2012 at 2:45 am | Permalink

    Went off her at a New Zealand concert when she flew in the same day and asked to be excused jetlag. My view was at $100+ a ticket she could have turned up day earlier and had a sleep. Shows basic contempt for the audience.

    • Filippo
      Posted July 23, 2012 at 5:29 am | Permalink

      Prior Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance.

      (At least on her and/or her tour/road/booking management’s part)

      • Gordon
        Posted July 24, 2012 at 1:44 am | Permalink

        Bugger. Got the wrong act. It was Diana Krall. Must be getting old and confused and owe apologies to JC and other fans.

  12. Posted July 23, 2012 at 4:47 am | Permalink

    I love her. I listened to that album quite a bit when my kids were little. My son used to sing that song to me when he was about 3. Instead of “baby, even though,” he said “baby, heapen-o.” Made me laugh & cry at the same time. Sweet memory now that he is 11 and barely hugs his mom:)

  13. Veroxitatis
    Posted July 23, 2012 at 5:31 am | Permalink

    I hesitate to engage with this subject matter after my last rap over the knuckles (I have however responded on that thread, Jerry) May I say I very much admire Alison Krauss, both on her own and with Union Station and in various collaborations, She did some work also with Mark Knopfler of British band Dire Straits – who has also figured in the C&W genre under a group called The Notting Hillbillies. Well worth listening to.

  14. NMcC
    Posted July 23, 2012 at 6:16 am | Permalink

    Oh, for goodness sake! All deep and meaningful musical considerations aside, Donnie Osmond? You obviously were never a warrior in the great Osmonds versus Jacksons cultural war of the 70s, like what I was. Surely you mean Donny Osmond!

    • Filippo
      Posted July 23, 2012 at 7:52 am | Permalink

      I was once admonished for the grevious error of referring to “Astrid” Gilberto. Her first name is spelled “Astrud.”

      The admonisher informed me that “There is no ‘e’ in “Astrud.”

  15. Posted July 23, 2012 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    I’ve been a fan of hers for at least a decade. And I agree with the comment about the contrast between her and the Tebows of the world. Although I’m not a religious person, I always enjoyed the closing numbers on her albums, most of which are simple gospel songs that are very personal in nature. And her work with the Cox family, while not my favorite, is a valued part of my collection.

  16. Posted July 23, 2012 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Her son is (or was) on the same Nashville school’s soccer team as my manager’s. Just sayin’.

    /@

    • Jesse
      Posted July 24, 2012 at 8:40 am | Permalink

      Her father was my landlord from 1984 to 1993 in Illinois (hee hee, just sayin’).

      Around 1984 she’d recently won the natl. bluegrass fiddlers’ competition at ~age 13 or 14. Later on, it was fun to go to free noontime concerts she and her group Union Station gave on the Univ. of Illinois campus for a short while. One thing that struck me was how she used the microphone; she almost instinctively backed away when she ended each phrase, a natural fade-out (or whatever you call it).

      I KNEW she was going to be something huge.
      BTW she’s also really smart. She went to the University High School and I think graduated in three years, not the normal four.

  17. Nal
    Posted July 23, 2012 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    If you want to hear The Foundations in stereo, go here.

  18. Peter Beattie
    Posted July 29, 2012 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    Lovely song and an absolutely astonishingly well-done concert, which is available on DVD.


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