Liner Note Author: Johnny Carson.
Arranger: Artie Schroeck.
An ideal representation of the acoustic and ethereal side of the early, winsome singer/songwriter sound, this promising debut only hints at Rankin's traditional pop and world music vision. The Tin Pan Alley and ethnic roots of the music he grew up with in New York City are obscured by his alignment with the sounds of some of the artists he covers on the record, including Bob Dylan ("Mr. Tambourine Man"), Gordon Lightfoot ("Song for a Winter's Night"), and, most successfully, Fred Neil ("Dolphin"). "Cotton Candy Sandman" perfectly captures the gauzy, warm glow of mellow love that permeated the musical mood of 1967. The highlight of the album is Rankin's own composition, the inviting "Peaceful," which foreshadows his later work. While the long-out-of-print album only shows glimpses of his full abilities, it has a quaint, antiquated '60s charm and even includes liner notes from none other than Johnny Carson. ~ Steve Matteo