Barefoot on the Beach

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Barefoot on the Beach
Michael Franks Barefoot on the Beach CD.jpg
Studio album by Michael Franks
Released 1 June 1999
Genre Smooth jazz
Vocal jazz
Length 62:27
Language English
Label Windham Hill Records
Producer Chuck Loeb
Jimmy Haslip
Michael Franks chronology
The Best of Michael Franks: A Backward Glance
Barefoot on the Beach
The Michael Franks Anthology: The Art of Love

Barefoot on the Beach is a smooth vocal jazz album by American singer-songwriter and musician Michael Franks, released in 1999 with Windham Hill Records.[1] It was Franks' fourteenth studio album, after Abandoned Garden and prior to Watching the Snow.


Michael Franks' long-standing relationship with Warner Bros. Records (and its subsidiary Reprise Records) which began with the 1976 album The Art of Tea ended with Barefoot on the Beach.[2] The album was his first and only release with Windham Hill Records, a Sony Music label; subsequent albums would be released with Koch (now E1 Music) and Shanachie Records. His compilation albums continued to be released with Warner Bros.

The album includes a duet with Valerie Simpson in "Now Love Has No End", and saw the return of Joe Sample and The Yellowjackets' Jimmy Haslip.

While the general mood and tone of the tracks are evocative of summer, it also contains biting commentary on Broadcast Architecture's dominance of American smooth jazz radio at the time with "Mr Smooth".[3] Lyrics such as "some of us remember how much choice there was, before he took the throne", and "his verdict we must wait" lament the dominance and perceived heavy-handed influence of the network on the genre.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Barefoot on the Beach" Blenzig, Franks 5:04
2. "Heart Like an Open Book" Franks 4:48
3. "Now Love Has No End" (with Valerie Simpson) Franks 6:13
4. "The Fountain of Youth" Franks 5:52
5. "When You Smiled at Me" Franks 5:04
6. "Double Talk" Franks 6:12
7. "Every Time She Whispers" Franks 7:24
8. "Why Spring Ain't Here" Franks 4:27
9. "A Walk in the Rain" Franks 6:21
10. "Mr. Smooth" Franks 4:40
11. "Like Moon Behind a Cloud" Franks 6:23




Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[4]

Writing for AllMusic, Jonathan Widran praised Franks' vocal style and longevity. "Countless musical trends have steamrolled by since this wry singer songwriter with the cool and collected, wistful onionskin voice first graced the adult music world in the mid-'70s [..] yet Franks has stood his ground, growing as an observational lyricist while his relaxed demeanor stays pretty much the same, and charmingly so." He concluded the album is "the kind of spring in your step music Franks fashioned his career out of."


  1. ^ "Discography in Order of Release". Retrieved 2012-02-12. 
  2. ^ PopMatters Staff. "Michael Franks, Barefoot on the Beach". Retrieved 2012-03-12. 
  3. ^ Hughes, Dave (2000-03-01). "CD/LP/Track Review: Michael Franks: Barefoot on the Beach". Retrieved 2012-03-12. 
  4. ^ Widran, Jonathan. Barefoot on the Beach – Michael Franks at AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-02-12.


External links[edit]