Dropped-out folk singer's final solo album from 1972

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Barbara Keith

Dissatisfied with the rock business, this former Greenwich Village folkie?whose songs were being sung by Delaney & Bonnie, The Dillards and Barbra Streisand?handed back the advance Warners had given her and left LA with her husband to woodshed in Massachusetts.

They eventually became the reclusive family band The Stone Coyotes, who influenced Elmore Leonard’s Be Cool.

With their music about to surface in the movie of that novel, excellent reissue label Water has taken the trouble to unearth Barbara’s parting shot.

Her voice is a strident thing, like a cross between Judy Collins and Grace Slick, occasionally lacking in colours, but with a pure, back-porch timbre that suits the country-flavoured songs fine.

Her original of “Free The People” carries some gospel clout and the playing, by Lowell George, Spooner Oldham and company, is just right.