Folk singer Judy Collins has inspired audiences with her sublime vocals, bold yet emotionally sensitive songwriting, and a firm commitment to social activism. Her version of Bob Dylan’s Mr Tambourine Man. remains a hauntingly ethereal and powerful rendering that arguably outshines the original; Judy’s voice can switch from gentleness to full-on force with beautiful intonation and control.
The American singer has confirmed that she will perform at Belfast’s Waterfront Studio on October 9, with special guest Ari Hest, affording local audiences a unique opportunity to enjoy one of the most original voices on the 1960s Greenwich Village folk scene, where Judy would befriend Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell and Randy Newman.
Collins began her impressive music career at 13 as a piano prodigy playing pieces by Mozart. But the hardluck tales and rugged sensitivity of folk revival music by artists such as Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger seduced her away from the prospect of life as a concert pianist and so began her lifelong affair with the guitar and the pursuit of emotional truth in melancholic lyrics.
In 1961 she released her debut, A Maid of Constant Sorrow, which featured interpretations of works by Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, and Tom Paxton.
Collins can now draw from an iconic 50-album body of work but is perhaps most famous for her recordings of Joni’s Both Sides Now as well as her sweetly dreamy version of Send in the Clowns, a ballad written by Stephen Sondheim for Broadway musical A Little Night Music. This genre-straddling artist has garnered several top ten hits as well as gold and platinum selling albums.
Judy is esteemed for her imaginative interpretations of traditional and contemporary folk standards as well as her own poetic and poignant original compositions.
Recently artists such as Rufus Wainwright, Shawn Colvin, Arlo Gutherie, Joan Baez, and Leonard Cohen honoured her legacy with the album Born to the Breed: A Tribute to Judy Collins.
An Evening with Judy Collins, Waterfront Studio, Belfast, October 9. Visit www.waterfront.co.uk or call 02890 334 455.