Tanita Tikaram – Ancient Heart (1988)

LPFrontCover1.JPGAncient Heart is the debut studio album by Tanita Tikaram. The record was initially released by Warner Music Group on 13 September 1988. The album had huge success and was a hit globally, launching Tanita’s mainstream career. Guest musicians included Rod Argent, Mark Isham, Peter Van Hooke, Dave “Clem” Clempson,Paul Brady, and Brendan Croker. Argent and Van Hooke produced the album. The record includes four singles.

It was the best selling album of 1989 in Germany (by wikipedia)

Singer/songwriter Tanita Tikaram’s debut album, Ancient Heart, stands as one of the most underappreciated albums of the 1980s, and she, along with Tracy Chapman, preceded the 1990s’ onslaught of female singer/songwriters by almost a decade. Tikaram, who was only 19 when this album was released, created a melancholy and wistful work, mature beyond her years, of startling originality and honesty. While this album may be considered folkish and artsy, it never stoops to the clichés that dominated those styles of music in the later Lilith Fair years. Her near perfect signature song “Twist in My Sobriety” is a stark, sinuous, desperate torch song that managed to garner a bit of radio and video airplay in its day and sounded like nothing else then or since.


Other highlights include the lovely and more upbeat “Cathedral Song,” “World Outside Your Window,” and “Good Tradition”,” as well as the jazzy “For All the Years” and the haunting “I Love You” and “Valentine Heart” — the latter being one of the album’s true highlights. Ancient Heart is a smoky, world-weary album, that, years after its initial release, does not sound one bit dated and has effortlessly stood the test of time. The definite highlight of Tanita Tikaram’s career. (by Jose F. Promis)


Rod Argent (keyboards)
Pete Beachill (trombone)
Paul Brady (mandolin)
Clem Clempson (guitar)
Mark Creswell (guitar)
Brendan Croker (guitar)
Mitch Dalton (guitar)
Martin Ditcham (percussion)
John Georgiadis (violin)
Keith Harvey (cello)
Peter van Hooke (drums)
Mark Isham (trumpet, flugelhorn)
Ian Jewell (viola)
Noel Langley (trumpet)
David Lindley (violin)
Rory McFarlane (bass)
Malcolm Messiter (oboe)
Helen O’Hara (violin)
Brendon O’Reilly (violin)
Marc Ribot (guitar)
Tanita Tikaram (vocals, guitar)
Philip Todd (saxophone)


01. Good Tradition 2.52
02. Cathedral Song 2.54
03. Sighing Innocents 3.34
04. I Love You 2.45
05. World Outside Your Window 4.54
06. For All These Years 5.16
07. Twist In My Sobriety 4.52
08. Poor Cow 1.58
09. He Likes The Sun 5.29
10. Valentine Heart 4.06
11. Preyed Upon 5.05

All songs written by Tanita Tikaram