Leave Your Sleep by by Natalie Merchant

Mixed Media
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In an age of iTunes downloads and “American Idol” crooners, this double CD, complete with an 80-page booklet, is a wonder. Merchant (former lead singer of 10,000 Maniacs) comes back from a seven-year maternity leave to offer 26 songs based on poems ranging from Mother Goose to e.e. cummings. Each song is set to a different musical style, including Irish folk, Native American chant, bluegrass, R&B, jazz, klezmer, and orchestral music. In collaboration with more than 100 first-rate musicians (Wynton Marsalis on jazz trumpet, for example), Merchant has produced an album for adults with an eclectic taste in music who are kids at heart. (Nonesuch)

About the Author

Otto Selles teaches French at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Mich., and attends Neland Avenue Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids.

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