Come to My Garden
|Come to My Garden|
|Studio album by Minnie Riperton|
|Recorded||November 24–26, 1969
Ter Mar Studios
|Minnie Riperton chronology|
Come to My Garden is the debut solo album by Minnie Riperton which was produced, arranged and orchestrated by Charles Stepney and released in 1970. It was re-released on CD in 1999. None of the CD editions have material transferred directly from the original master tapes. All CD editions were mastered in UK, USA and other countries using LP records and different noise reduction methods. It is quite possible that original tapes that belonged to GRT were lost forever.
The album peaked at number one hundred and sixty on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart in 1974. Some versions of the CD release don't include the last track, "Whenever, Wherever." Riperton said she wanted a sound like the great Dionne Warwick / Burt Bacharach collaborations for the album.
Minnie Riperton was presented as a solo artist by Ramsey Lewis on Saturday, December 26, 1970 at Chicago's famed London House. She performed several numbers from the album accompanied by Charles Stepney, the album's producer. Although commercially unsuccessful, Come to My Garden is considered a masterpiece by critics. "Les Fleurs" is probably the album's best known song, and "Expecting" remains a favourite among fans.
The heavy rock aspect of Riperton's band Rotary Connection is absent here, replaced by lush orchestrations and a jazzy soft-pop feel that complements Riperton's multi-octave voice. The songs, mostly by Stepney and Riperton's husband Richard Rudolph, are mostly minor-key ballads, with alternately sorrowful and poetic lyrics. The singer-songwriter-y results recall early albums by Roberta Flack as well as the contemporary work by Riperton's future employer/mentor Stevie Wonder.
- "Les Fleurs" (Charles Stepney, Richard Rudolph) – 3:18
- "Completeness" (Stepney, Rose Johnson) – 3:32
- "Come to My Garden" (Rudolph) – 3:19
- "Memory Band" (Stepney) – 4:05
- "Rainy Day in Centerville" (Stepney, Rudolph) – 5:22
- "Close Your Eyes and Remember" (Stepney, Rudolph) – 3:38
- "Oh, By the Way" (Stepney, Rudolph) – 2:58
- "Expecting" (Stepney, Jon Stocklin) – 3:51
- "Only When I'm Dreaming" (Stepney, Sidney Barnes) – 3:24
- "Whenever, Wherever" (Stepney, Johnson) – 3:34
- Elsa Harris, Kitty Hayward, Minnie Riperton – Backing vocals
- Maurice White – Drums
- Phil Upchurch – Guitar
- Ramsey Lewis – Piano
- Charles Stepney – Arranger and conductor
- Minnie Riperton – Vocals