CD release date 30 August 2001 - CDCHD 791
Richer Than A Rich Man’ rare mid 70's B side.
‘Running Close Behind You’ rare mid 70's B side-alternate take.
‘Young Virgin Eyes (I’m All Wrapped Up)’ rare mid 70's single.
Please send me any reviews you read that arn't already posted here - then we all gain
Terri's review will appear here soon
Warner Bros. WB 1945
Dion and his producer Phil Gernhard have put together an LP that will surely put him high on the charts once again.
Included in this super package are updated versions of "The Wanderer" and "Ruby Baby." "Sunshine Lady," "Brand New Morning" and "Please Be My Friend/Take a Little Time" are highlights.
Will attract much FM and even Top 40 radio and sales will be very big.
The title tune, his new single is spotlighted
Suite for Late Summer
Warner Bros. BS 2642
Genre: POP PICK
Another fine LP from the '50's rocker who successfully made the transition to folk, country and blues.
Displaying a fine, distinctive voice and a skillful ability as a writer, highlights include "Running Close Behind You," "Tennessee Madonna" and "Wedding Song."
Possibly his best set yet ???
The unusual thing about sanctuary as an album is that the whole thing hinges on the title cut .It’s a lovely song (written by Dick Holler who also did AMJ) and why it failed to go far as a single is a minor mystery of the record business. Dions singing is so clearly at one with the songs slow catchy melody that you almost forget to notice the lyrics , which set the thematic tone for almost every other track. "Well I got to Haight /I was a little late/it was an empty dream I found .." Dion seems to have become disillusioned with the dream of togetherness and no longer able to accept the uneasy generality behind the idea of the brotherhood . Like so many others he has withdrawn to his privacy (I got John and Mary and Sanctuary on telegraph road) . Dions withdrawal may have been a little more marked than most , with the drug problems he recounts so directly in " Your Own Backyard" a past single . But whatever he has left behind it is his newly found faith in himself and the very private life style that entails that almost all of Sanctuary has been built around.
Some of the album (Sunshine lady) is about the present and about the kind of love that now give him solace , but most of it is a nostalgic look backward tracing the path he took to arrive where he is right now. "Harmony Sound" an original has a haunting ring of time gone by and Dions remakes of his old hits - The Wander, Ruby Baby , AMJ are coloured with affection good humour and a very gentle hindsight .
It must be said that the album is not without its weak moments only a couple of individual cuts are really distinctive , most of them nice in a very ordinary way and a few (Willego, Almond Joy) are out and out throwaways . But sometimes an album can get by primarily on its spirit and the spirit Dion generates is one of such cheerful well being that you're ready to forgive him all his excesses and most of his shortcomings too.
Dion DiMucci has come an awfully long way. From his street corner singing days in the Bronx to his stints with the Timberlanes, who later became Dion and the Belmonts, DiMucci has been through the grand musical grind. After abandoning his Brylcream, "Teenager-In-Love" image, he quietly got his mixed-up head together by discovering Robert Johnson's blues and Bobby Dylan's lyrics. The fresh music gave him a second lease on life; and he made good by recording two solid albums, plus of course his classic single, "Abraham, Martin and John."
Now he offers us Sanctuary which presents DiMucci full circle, stark naked and singing like a new born babe loud and clear. Understandably most of the tunes on the LP are autobiographical; either about his career ("Harmony Sound"), his woman ("Sunshine Lady") or his new-found life ("Sanctuary"). His voice has become a little richer and a lot more mellow. He has picked up a bluesy tinge which fuses with his street corner drawl to form a delectable Country and Eastern funk. Through it all his delivery remains melodic (not unlike his Belmont days), while his lyrics remain reflective, revealing and almost al-ways optimistic. This man has clearly found sanctuary through his music. An added treat on the disk are the three live cuts "Abraham, Mar-tin & John," Almond Joy," and "Ruby Baby"-three oldies-but-goodies which Dion gives a 1972 treatment. Recorded live at the Bitter End in N.Y. they show that after a long fight with the elements, Dion DiMucci-the original wanderer-has clearly brought it all back home
A bright peak at the vision of a man who has seen thehighs and lows and has now found a niche in life that is warm and joyful.
Includes the hit "Santuary" and 8 other new songs plus fresh versions of 3 Dion classics - The Wander , Abraham Martin and John and Ruby Baby.
DION: Suite for Late Summer. Dion (vocals and guitar); orchestra. Soft Parade of Years; Seagull; Jennifer Knew; Wedding Song; Didn't You Change; and five others. WARNER BROS. BS
Performance: Good but strained
I continue to admire Dion He had the guts to see that there was something beyond teenybopper stardom (at a time when that term hadn't yet been coined) and set out to become a real musician.
This album proves that he has succeeded, but it also hints that his particular talent - applying high romanticism to every-day adolescent life-is about ten years out of date. Soft Parade of Years, for example, is a lovely song. But it is essentially a reminiscence, and an inaccurate try at describing the mood of today.
Of course, if the performances and songs were of a slightly higher quality it wouldn't matter whether or not they were "now."
But Dion still seems to draw from his late-Fifties teenage experience and values. Like others of his generation-Neil Sedaka, for instance - he is trying hard to reach new audiences, but he doesn't seem to be able to resist the occasional "commercial" fillip in his work.
It is a fatal temptation. for that sort of thing has long since gone. and only strikes today's audiences as hokey. P.R.
Thanks to Len for submitting this - if this article dosn't look right on your screen try printing it.It should then be ok.
A text versionof this is also available above at "suite pre-publicity+ Various early reviews?"
Thanks for the email. I knew Dion when we both lived in Miami. I used to go over to his house, along with Teri DeSario, a singer who later had a gold single with KC from the Sunshine Band, entitled, "Are You Ready". Anyway, we all used to write and share our songs. I was young and about to get married (for the first time) and Dion suggested that if I wrote a song for the wedding, he would come and sing it. I wrote the Wedding Song and gave it to him.
He did appear at my wedding and sang the song. Shortly thereafter he called me and said that he would like to include the song on his next album. That was it! The album never did as well as he hoped it would, but I was very pleased to see that it is being re-issued.
BTW, Michael gave me permission to post his response on Dion message boards as well as the Written on the Subway Wall site. Doug
Ace CDCHD 792 (77:50)
Like Bobby Darin, Dion Di Mucci never stopped at the border posts between musical styles. After doo-wop, rock'n'roll and gritty R&B, he entered the 70s as a folkie - albeit one with an edge over his rivals, namely the fact that he possessed a voice that was the epitome of white soul. That's enough to give these patchy but undeniably enjoy-able early 70s albums a real touch of class (and more than a hint of the feel of Van Morrison's His Band And Street Choir).
Sanctuary is crisp, relaxed and (on a three-song live set from the Bitter End) exuberant; Suite For Late Summer is more homogeneous, but none the less convincing for that. Add in three rare B-sides (including 1977's 'Young Virgin Eyes', a blatant rewrite of his Spector classic, 'Baby Let's Stick Together'), and you have a quality package, completed by three bonus tracks, one of which, 'Young Virgin Eyes', delightfully anticipates Dion's Yo Frankie later period.
The re-examination of Dion Dimucci's 70's oeuvre continues twofer set combining 1971's part live part studio Sanctuary with the wistful elegiac Suite for late summer LP from the following year. Sanctuary's live portion , revisiting old faves like the wanderer , ruby baby and AMJ finds Dion in muscular bluesy form ,instilling new life into old grooves . But the studio material is a revelation with the small band combining to produce a set of majestic mellow grooves like Sunshine Lady ,whose easy charms are worthy of Fred Neil . Russ Titlemans under stated production on the soaring Seagull and the delicate Soft Parade of Years bears comparison with Neil Youngs finest acoustic work . There are also several rare 45's which rap up Dions Warner Years .