Today’s desert island disc: Bryan Ferry, The Bride Stripped Bare

Bryan Ferry The Bride Stripped Bare

Bryan Ferry is a classic crooner in the same sense that Frank Sinatra was – he can sing anything and imbue it with his own style, interpreting it meaningfully and casting it in a new light. Starting in the 70s, Ferry established a long tradition of occasionally releasing solo albums that featured cover versions. The Bride Stripped Bare is, in my opinion, the best example of this: filled with ‘The Same Old Blues,’ ‘Carrickfergus’ and ‘Take Me to the River,’ it can’t fail. The arrangements are tasteful and accomplished, and Ferry’s own compositions (almost) keep up with the covers. His version of ‘That’s How Strong My Love Is’ has to be heard to be believed – it’s completely over the top to the point of being camp, and emotionally touching and sincere at the same time… quite an accomplishment. Most people would think of this as a ‘minor’ record at best, a footnote made by someone who was famous for something else; I think it deserves to be loved for being fearless and really showcasing Bryan Ferry’s unique and sensuous voice.

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