Close-Up (The Kingston Trio album)

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Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 1961
RecordedAugust 1961
StudioCapitol Studio B, Los Angeles, California
ProducerVoyle Gilmore
The Kingston Trio chronology
Goin' Places
College Concert
Singles from Close-Up
  1. "Coming from the Mountains"/"Nothing More to Look Forward To"
    Released: 1961

Close-Up is the eleventh album by the American folk music group the Kingston Trio, released in 1961 (see 1961 in music). (The Capitol Years gives the release date as September.)[1] It was the first release by the group after the departure of founding member Dave Guard. The Trio now consisted of Bob Shane, Nick Reynolds and Guard's replacement John Stewart. Close-Up peaked at number three on the Billboard charts. The lead-off single was "Coming from the Mountains" backed with a non-LP track, "Nothing More to Look Forward To". Close-Up was nominated for a Grammy award in 1961 for Best Performance by a Vocal Group.


After the departure of Guard, a replacement was sought by the remaining group members and their manager Frank Werber. Stewart, previously a member of The Cumberland Three, had written two songs recorded by the Guard-era Trio ("Molly Dee" and "Green Grasses") and was also a long-time fan of the group. He was hired and began his career with the group prior to the recording of Close-Up in August 1961. After the departure of Guard, the Kingston Trio name was owned by Shane, Reynolds, and Werber. Stewart was never a full-fledged partner in the Kingston Trio, but instead was on a salary ($500/week) his entire tenure. There was no mention on the packaging that Stewart was a new member of the group.[2]

As was common on their previous albums, the group members again claimed authorship on Close-Up for songs that they didn't compose and that were in reality, in the Public Domain.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4.5/5 stars [3]

Allmusic music critic Bruce Eder praised the album, writing: "the album showed the trio to be in solid musical shape, harmonizing beautifully, and with a new songwriting talent in their midst in the guise of Stewart, whose haunting, slightly bluesy ballad "When My Love Was Here" was the highlight of the record. Close Up, although not as groundbreaking as the trio's self-titled debut three years earlier, showed a surprisingly undiminished group and is a good representation of where popular folk music was in late 1961... this melodic and aesthetically pleasing album was perfect for its time and still evokes that relatively innocent and calm period in our past."[3]

Close-Up was nominated for a Grammy award in 1961 for Best Performance by a Vocal Group.


Track listing[edit]

Some early issues of the album incorrectly labeled some of the songs. "The Whistling Gypsy" was mis-titled "The Gypsy Rover", "Oh, Sail Away" was simply "Sail Away", "Glorious Kingdom" was "Oh Baby Boy", "Coming From the Mountains" was "Wherever We May Go", and "Weeping Willow" was mis-titled "Beneath the Willows".

Side one[edit]

  1. "Coming from the Mountains" (John Stewart)
  2. "Oh, Sail Away" (John Phillips, Dick Weisman)
  3. "Take Her Out of Pity" (Arranged by Reynolds, Shane, Stewart)
  4. "Don't You Weep, Mary" (Arranged by Reynolds, Shane, Stewart)
  5. "The Whistling Gypsy" (Leo Maguire)
  6. "O Ken Karanga" (Maurice Baron, Lionel Belasco, Massie Patterson)

Side two[edit]

  1. "Jesse James" (Arranged by Reynolds, Shane, Stewart)
  2. "Glorious Kingdom" (Arranged by Reynolds, Shane, Stewart)
  3. "When My Love Was Here" (Stewart)
  4. "Karu" (Arranged by Reynolds, Shane, Stewart)
  5. "Weeping Willow" (Arranged by Reynolds, Shane, Stewart)
  6. "Reuben James" (Woody Guthrie)


Production notes[edit]

  • Voyle Gilmore – producer
  • Pete Abbott – engineer
  • Ken Veeder – cover photo

Chart positions[edit]

Year Chart Position
1961 Billboard Pop Albums 3


  1. ^ Liner notes; The Kingston Trio: The Capitol Years (Capitol Records CD7243 8 28498 2 7)
  2. ^ Blake, B., Rubeck, J., Shaw, A. (1986) The Kingston Trio On Record. Kingston Korner Inc, ILL: ISBN 0-9614594-0-9
  3. ^ a b Eder, Bruce. "Close-Up > Review". Allmusic. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  4. ^ Allmusic entry for reissue of Close-Up/College Concert.

External links[edit]