A cultural treasure for more than 50 years and in the midst of a career renaissance, Judy Collins will release her new album Spellbound on February 25th 2022. The artist’s 29th album is also a remarkable first, featuring all original songs written entirely by Collins. Spellbound introduces 12 recently composed, modern folk songs and a bonus track of her evergreen The Blizzard. The single When I Was A Girl In Colorado is out now - please see video above. A 2LP version of the album is expected in August 2022.
With Spellbound, Collins has created an introspective album that unfolds as a curated exhibition of her remarkable life, welcoming listeners into her formative moments, both public and personal. In her liner notes, Collins dedicates the album to folk masters Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie, whose traditions of generously sharing their lives, loves, and reflections are carried forward in Spellbound’s honest and personal songwriting. While Collins has long been celebrated for her song interpretation and has shared a host of beloved original songs since her early albums, never before has she created an album entirely of her own work, until now.
“They say after the plague came the Renaissance,” says Judy. “Now felt like the perfect time to make this record because, after all that’s happened in the world, we need something beautiful and inspirational to lift us up.”
Spellbound showcases Collins’ evocative and painterly songwriting, with lyrics that revisit periods of her life, including the fertile 1960s Greenwich Village folk scene (So Alive), unforgettable childhood moments in nature (When I Was A Girl In Colorado), snapshots of her ‘hell-raising’ years, and lifelong social activism (personified in Thomas Merton about the monk/author and renowned anti-war activist). The album title references a formative time in Judy’s life when her pure love of the outdoors lured her to consider life as a park ranger.
In creating the album Collins worked with a trusted family of musicians including co-producer Alan Silverman and singer-songwriter-guitarist Ari Hest (Judy and Ari were nominated for a Best Folk Album Grammy in 2016 for their duet record Silver Skies Blue). The album’s core studio musicians include multi-instrumentalist Thad DeBrock (Duncan Sheik, Nelly, Jonas Brothers), bassist Zev Katz (Marc Anthony, Elton John, Billy Joel), and drummer Doug Yowell (Suzanne Vega, Joe Jackson, Duncan Sheik). Spellbound’s instrumentation features acoustic guitar, electric guitar, piano, synthesiser, lyrical bass lines and brushed drums. Collins’ pristine vocals soar as though no time has elapsed since her voice mesmerised a generation with Wildflowers.
Judy Collins recently launched a podcast Since You’ve Asked, featuring refreshingly honest conversations with guests ranging from Jeff Daniels and Clive Davis to Christiane Amanpour. In December 2021 at New York’s Town Hall, Collins returned to live performance with a concert centred on her 2019 album Winter Stories. During the pandemic shutdown of 2021, Collins streamed a concert from an empty Town Hall; a recording of the show was released digitally in August 2021 as Judy Collins: Live at The Town Hall NYC.
In a life and career filled with milestone moments, Spellbound is a high-water mark of Collins’ artistry and personal evolution. “I always knew I was going to be a late bloomer,” she says.
- Judy Collins' Spellbound is due for release February 25th 2022 on CD & Digital
- Judy Collins' Spellbound (Limited Edition Coloured Vinyl) - Special 2LP set featuring 4 special bonus tracks and a gorgeous 16-page 11″ x 11″ booklet all housed in a gatefold jacket. Available in translucent blue or translucent purple vinyl. Expected to ship mid August 2022
- Single When I Was A Girl In Colorado - please see video above
- Label - Cleopatra
- Catalogue Number - CLO2961