Take The 5ifth (RGFCD026)
1995 was a year when the name of BRIDGET ST.JOHN suddenly re-appeared. The four LPs she released in the early 1970s were all reissued this year (for details, see below), but more to the point, 1995 saw the release of a new album of previously unreleased recordings. 'Take The 5ifth' (released September, 1995) is composed of material recorded between 1975 and 1982. Bridget moved to New York in the mid-1970s. She told 'Folk Roots'. "I followed my heart, and from the moment I arrived, I loved the place. It was so different from anywhere I'd been before, so vibrant and energetic".
Bridget has lived in New York, in Greenwich Village to be precise, ever since, a period now approaching twenty years. She continued with her career until 1983, when her daughter was born - as a single parent, the minimal pickings which music could provide at that time were insufficient, and she had to earn a living in less glamorous professions. Up to 1982, she had been performing and recording regularly, but nothing was released at the time (which says more about prevailing musical fashions than suggesting any shortcomings in her work). The evidence is on 'Take The 5ifth'...
Half a dozen of the tracks here feature Bridget backed by what many consider to be the finest studio group of the era. Known as Stuff, the band, formed and led by Gordon Edwards on bass, included guitarists Cornell Dupree and Eric Gale, keyboard player Richard Tee and Steve Gadd (drums). If those names seem familiar, it's because they played on several albums by Paul Simon and other stars of similar stature during the same time period as they were working with Bridget, while also releasing six albums as Stuff between 1977 and 1980, which were released by Warner Bros in the US, Japan and Germany. Gordon Edwards also produced the tracks here featuring Stuff.
Most of the tracks on 'Take The Fifth' were recorded in New York, but a few were the final recordings Bridget made in Britain before embarking on her relocation to the United States. The album was released in 1995 when she was planning to record and perform again on a regular basis - her first UK live date for far too long took place in the autumn of 1995.
Road Goes On Forever Records has been accorded the privilege of releasing 'Take The Fifth' (RGFCD 026). It is a happy coincidence that virtually all Bridget's previous releases were reissued in 1995 for the first time on CD. Her three LPs made for Dandelion were all released by See For Miles Records ('Ask Me No Questions' and 'Songs For The Gentleman' are together on SEECD 408, and 'Thank You For...' plus bonus tracks is on SEECD 428) and her 'Jumblequeen' album (originally on Chrysalis) was reissued, again with bonus tracks, by BGO Records (BGOCD 260).