"It's a folk singer's job to comfort disturbed people and to disturb comfortable people" - Woody Guthrie
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Tuesday, 6 August 2013
Rewind: 1993 Natalie Merchant Announces She is Leaving 10,000 Maniacs to pursue a Solo Career
August 5th 1993 Natalie Merchant told MTV that she was leaving She had been with the band since 1981, firstly as a vocalist alongside Rob Buck's ex-wife Terri Newhouse. Newhouse left the band in July that year and Merchant took over the lead vocals and songwriting duties at the tender age of 17.
'Blind Man's Zoo' would follow in 1989 and became their most successful album chartwise reaching #13 in the USA and #18 in the UK. The album is loaded with so many great songs that it's hard to spotlight anyone of them. It's still one of my favourite albums of theirs.
The final studio album that Natalie Merchant appeared on with 10,000 Maniacs is the brilliant 'Our Time In Eden'. 'These Are Days', 'Candy Everybody Wants', and 'Few and Far Between' were the single releases. The other standout tracks for me are 'Stockton Gala Days', 'Jezebel', and 'Tolerance'. One of the strange things about this album is that playing viola and providing backing vocals was Natalie's replacement Mary Ramsey. Merchant had already indicated to fellow band members in 1991 that she would be departing once she had completed recording on the 'Our Time in Eden' album, but it didn't become public knowledge until 1993. One of the final acts to perform before leaving the band would the the MTV Unplugged show in April 1993 and the album would be released in October 1993 and it's a fine testament to just how good live they were.