"I'm in the best place I've ever been in my life," declares Joan Wasser, and she's just recorded the album that proves it. The Classic, the fourth album of originals by the uniquely charismatic artist known as Joan As Police Woman, builds on the creative impetus and success of its 2011 predecessor The Deep Field, on which Joan strove to create music rooted in an intimate, elemental and uplifting brand of soul combined with her own unique serene, torch-singing temperament, with a more liberated feel than ever before. The result is a perfect reflection of her efforts to address - and solve - personal issues and so reject the singer-songwriter's traditional melancholic disposition for an unashamed lust for life. As graffiti in the artwork of her 2006 debut album Real Life read: "Evolve" and "Be Brave".
The Classic is named after one of its ten tracks. "Part is to do with the way we recorded mostly live; the way records used to get made," she explains. "But I wrote 'The Classic' itself as a classic girl-group doo wop song, and the lyric refers to classic old songs like Marvin Gaye and Tammy Terrell 'You're All I Need To Get By', Stevie Wonder's ' Joy Inside My Tears' and Danny & The Juniors' 'Rock'n'Roll Is Here To Stay'. And at the end, I spell out the name of the song, like Aretha Franklin did with 'R-E-S-P-E-C-T'! The song begins 'I am home in your arms' and it's solely joyful, expressing jubilation. Melancholy is still part of my life, but it's no longer leeching energy from my life."