Jamie Cullum en Jardines de Viveros 2017 VALENCIA

25 de julio de 2017 § Deja un comentario

Jamie Cullum cantante y pianista londinense q practica el salto desde lo alto de un piano como seña de identidad indiscutible. Amén de esta circunstancia muy identificadora tb se caracteriza por una voz quebrada y singular q le sitúa en un espacio musical diferenciador. Su aspecto de jovencito extrovertido le permite llegar con facilidad a diferentes públicos femenino-obsesivos logrando con ello calores efusivos e incontrolados en sus directos. Invita a cantar a su público con éxito y se acompaña con una banda de multi-instrumentistas, sin memorables, celebrando así su liderazgo con vehemencia y buenas técnicas persuasivas. Comenzó su carrera con gran intención y, creo, el exceso de comercialidad secuestró su talento indiscutible. Ya me gustaría reencontrarme con el Cullum de 2005: eterna promesa. Destacaré “It Ain’t Necessarily SoLISTEN!

British pianist/vocalist Jamie Cullum mixes jazz with melodic pop and rock into a crossover style that calls to mind such artists as Harry Connick, Jr. and Norah Jones. In that vein, Cullum will just as often cover a swinging jazz standard as a modern rock song, and his original compositions deftly move from earnest ballads to songs of sardonic wit. Having played guitar and piano since age eight, Cullum developed an avid interest in jazz passed down from his older brother Ben. Inspired by such piano icons as Oscar Peterson and Dave Brubeck, Cullum spent some of his formative years living in Paris, where he honed his abilities performing in jazz clubs. Cullum eventually earned a degree from Reading University, during which time he recorded his first album, Heard It All Before, at age 19. Its surprise success eventually put him in contact with jazz bassist Geoff Gascoyne, who offered Cullum the opportunity to play on his album Songs of the Summer. With Gascoyne’s encouragement, Cullum eventually recorded his second album, Pointless Nostalgic, released in 2002. The album benefited from a boost of publicity as it received heavy airplay on TV and radio personality Michael Parkinson’s BBC 2 radio show.

Cullum eventually signed with Universal Records and released his breakthrough third full-length, Twentysomething, in 2003. The album charted all over the world, sold millions of copies, and made him the fastest-selling British jazz artist in history. Catching Tales and the compilation/mixtape album In the Mind of Jamie Cullum followed in 2005 and 2007, respectively. In 2009, Cullum was nominated along with Clint Eastwood for a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song for their composition “Gran Torino.” A year later, he released the album The Pursuit. In 2013, Cullum returned with his sixth studio album, Momentum; it performed respectably the U.K., reaching 20 on the album charts, but didn’t make much of a ripple in the U.S. Cullum’s seventh album, Interlude, saw release in October of 2014 in most parts of the world — including his native U.K., where it entered the charts at 19 — but wasn’t scheduled for U.S. release until 2015.

allmusic.com

D.E.P AL JARREAU… siempre cantarás para nosotros

12 de febrero de 2017 § Deja un comentario

Seré muy breve… jamás he vivido un sentimiento de espiritualidad mayor escuchando cantar a un ser humano. Gracias Al

Smokey Mary (COLUMBIA 2013)

3 de febrero de 2017 § Deja un comentario

We are in Love de Harry Connick, Jr. en formato MiniDisc MAGIA digital… Todo tiene su explicación! Mi equipo musical SONY del histórico PATHFINDER v6 japonés de mi propiedad lee este estupendísimo soporte. Brutal!

Y ahora hablemos de Harry, actor, pianista y auténtico heredero de “La Voz” con un rico y prolífico número de grabaciones. Entró de lleno en el ámbito de la popularidad con su banda sonora de la película de 1989 When Harry Met Sally.  Ese mismo año, grabó dos discos simultáneamente orientados a públicos distintos: We Are in Love, un disco de estándares orientado al ámbito pop; el otro, Lofty’s Roach Souffle, completamente instrumental, orientado al mundo jazzístico. Continuó con su carrera de actor, con un papel protagonista en Copycat (1995) y se casó con la actriz Jill Goodacre.

Destacaré City Beneath The Sea de su disco “Smokey Mary”. LISTEN!

With very few exceptions, the career of Harry Connick, Jr., can be divided in half — his first two albums encompassed straight-ahead New Orleans jazz and stride piano while his later career (which paralleled his rising celebrity status) alternated between more contemporary New Orleans music and pop vocals with a debt to Frank Sinatra. Born in New Orleans on September 11, 1967, Connick grew up the son of two lawyers who owned a record store. After beginning on keyboards at the age of three, he first performed publicly at six and recorded with a local jazz band at ten. Connick attended the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts and studied with Ellis Marsalis and James Booker. A move to New York to study at Hunter College and the Manhattan School of Music gave him the opportunity to look up a Columbia Records executive who had asked to see him, and Connick’s self-titled album debut — a set of mostly unaccompanied standards — appeared in 1987. Jazz critics praised Connick’s maturity and engaging style as well as his extended stays at New York hot spots during the year. His second album, named for his age in 1988, was the first to feature him on vocals.

Already well known within jazz circles, Connick entered the American consciousness with the soundtrack to 1989’s popular film When Harry Met Sally. Director Rob Reiner had asked Connick to compose a soundtrack, and he recorded several warm standards (“It Had to Be You,” “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off,” “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore”) with a big-band backing. A world tour followed, and When Harry Met Sally eventually reached double-platinum status. With Connick a major celebrity, he diverged into an acting career, playing a tail gunner in 1990’s Memphis Belle. That same year, he released two albums simultaneously: one, We Are in Love, was another vocal outing with similar standards as had appeared on When Harry Met Sally, while Lofty’s Roach Souffle was all-instrumental. (Of course, the vocal album performed much better in the pop charts, hitting double platinum, while the instrumentals worked better with jazz audiences.) Connick toured again, this time with a big band, and recorded the group on 1991’s Blue Light, Red Light. Though his celebrity decreased slightly during the mid-’90s, Connick’s albums continued to reach platinum status, including 1992’s 25, a 1993 Christmas album, and 1994’s She. Connick continued his acting work with a starring role in 1995’s Copycat (where he played a serial killer), and he married actress Jill Goodacre. In 1996, he had a brief role in the year’s biggest blockbuster, Independence Day, but his album Star Turtle failed to connect with pop audiences. Come by Me, a return to big-band sounds, followed in 1999. In the new millennium, Connick cycled between albums exploring his jazz roots and those with songbook standards.

Interestingly, post-2001 Connick moved between two labels with albums getting released on both Columbia Records and saxophonist Branford Marsalis’ Marsalis Music label. Among these were the big-band album Only You, featuring popular music from the ’50s and ’60s, and the more intimate releases Other Hours: Connick on Piano, Vol. 1 (2003) and Occasion: Connick on Piano, Vol. 2 (2005), which focused on Connick’s instrumental abilities. As well as releasing albums, Connick continued to act, appearing regularly on the television sitcom Will & Grace before it ended in 2006. Ever devoted to his hometown, Connick was also heavily involved in the support and rebuilding of New Orleans post-Hurricane Katrina. In early September 2005, he organized the benefit telethon A Concert for Hurricane Relief on NBC to raise money for and draw attention to the beleaguered residents of New Orleans. Afterward, he worked closely with Habitat for Humanity in helping victims of Katrina. In 2007, Connick once again expressed his deep love for his hometown with the release of his New Orleans tribute album, Oh, My Nola, on Columbia Records. The similarly New Orleans-themed Chanson du Vieux Carré also appeared in 2007. A year later, Connick returned with his third holiday album, What a Night! A Christmas Album. He once again revisited a set of American popular song classics and contemporary pop standards with 2009’s Your Songs. In 2011, as part of WNET’s Great Performances series on PBS, Connick released the live album and DVD In Concert on Broadway. The concert featured Connick backed by his big band and orchestra performing at the Neil Simon Theater in New York City. In 2013, Connick returned with the funk-oriented album Smokey Mary. The album coincided with the 20th anniversary of the Krewe of Orpheus, the Mardi Gras super krewe that Connick co-founded in 1993. Included on the album was the song “Smokey Mary Boogie Woogie Choo Choo Train,” which Connick penned in homage to the krewe’s signature float. Also in 2013, Connick released the eclectic album of all-original songs, Every Man Should Know.

In 2014, Connick signed onto be a judge on the 13th season of American Idol. He stayed with the show through its final season — the one that ran from 2015-2016 — but he made plans to stay on television via a daytime variety show scheduled to appear in the autumn of 2016. While all these plans were being laid, Connick released the poppy album That Would Be Me in the fall of 2015.

allmusic.com

The Tony Bennett / Bill Evans Album (fantasy 1975)

7 de junio de 2013 § Deja un comentario

TONY BENNETT… un crooner genuino y de origen italiano circunstancia q le va bien al término. Se le recuerdan éxitos como “Blue Velvet” o “I Left My Heart In San Francisco“. Sin duda el eterno rival de Sinatra a pesar de la amistad q les unía y el éxito compartido en New York, New York. Tras un bajón en los 70/80 regresa vigoroso a la escena musical de la mano de figuras como Amy Winehouse, Mariah Carey, Elton John, Barbra Streisand, John Mayer ó Michael Bublé, así como con artistas latinos como Christina Aguilera, Gloria Estefan ó Juan Luis Guerra entre otros. Tony Bennett ha vendido 50 millones de discos y ha sumado múltiples galardones, como 17 premios Grammy y dos Emmy. Es también un reconocido pintor con obras en diversos museos e instituciones. Destacaré “the touch of your lips” acompañado por el eterno Bill Evans. LISTEN!

bennet evans

bennett frank bennett duets2 bennett unplugged bennett friends bennet ellington

Tony Bennett’s career has enjoyed three distinct phases, each of them very successful. In the early ’50s, he scored a series of major hits that made him one of the most popular recording artists of the time. In the early ’60s, he mounted a comeback as more of an adult-album seller. And from the mid-’80s on, he achieved renewed popularity with generations of listeners who hadn’t been born when he first appeared. This, however, defines Bennett more in terms of marketing than music. He himself probably would say that, in each phase of his career, he has remained largely constant to his goals of singing the best available songs the best way he knows how. Popular taste may have caused his level of recognition to increase or decrease, but he continued to sing popular standards in a warm, husky tenor, varying his timing and phrasing with a jazz fan’s sense of spontaneity to bring out the melodies and lyrics of the songs effectively. By the start of the 21st century, Bennett seemed like the last of a breed, but he remained as popular as ever.

Bennett grew up in the Astoria section of the borough of Queens in New York City under the nameAnthony Dominick Benedetto. His father, a grocer, died when he was about ten after a lingering illness that had forced his mother to become a seamstress to support the family of five. By then, he was already starting to attract notice as a singer, performing beside Mayor Fiorello La Guardia at the opening of the Triborough Bridge in 1936. By his teens, Bennett had set his sights on becoming a professional singer. After briefly attending the High School of Industrial Arts (now known as the High School of Art and Design), where he gained training as a painter, he dropped out of school at 16 to earn money to help support his family, meanwhile also performing at amateur shows. Upon his 18th birthday in 1944, he was drafted into the Army, and he saw combat in Europe during World War II. Mustered out in 1946, he went back to trying to make it in music, and he attended the American Theater Wing on the GI Bill. By the end of the 1940s, he had acquired a manager and was working regularly around New York. He got a break when Bob Hope saw him performing with Pearl Bailey in Greenwich Village and put him into his stage show, also suggesting a name change to Tony Bennett. In 1950, Columbia Records A&R directorMitch Miller heard his demonstration recording of “The Boulevard of Broken Dreams” and signed him to the label.

Bennett’s first hit, “Because of You,” topped the charts in September 1951, succeeded at number one by his cover of Hank Williams’ “Cold, Cold Heart.” Following another five chart entries over the next two years, he returned to number one in November 1953 with “Rags to Riches.” Its follow-up, “Stranger in Paradise” from the Broadway musical Kismet, was another chart-topper, and in 1954 Bennett also reached the Top Ten with Williams’ “There’ll Be No Teardrops Tonight” and “Cinnamon Sinner.” The rise of rock & roll in the mid-’50s made it more difficult for Bennett to score big hits, but he continued to place singles in the charts regularly through 1960, and even returned to the Top Ten with “In the Middle of an Island” in 1957. Meanwhile, he was developing a nightclub act that leaned more heavily on standards and was exploring album projects that allowed him to indulge his interest in jazz — notably 1957’s The Beat of My Heart, on which he was accompanied mainly by jazz percussionists, and 1959’s In Person! With Count Basie and His Orchestra. By the early ’60s, although he had faded as a singles artist, he had built a successful career making personal appearances and recording albums of well-known songs in the manner of Frank Sinatra.

In 1962, Bennett introduced “I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” a ballad written by two unknown songwriters, George Cory and Douglass Cross, who had pitched it to his pianist, Ralph Sharon. Released as a single, the song took time to catch on, and although it peaked only in the Top 20, it remained on one or the other of the national charts for almost nine months. It became Bennett’s signature song and pushed his career to a higher level. The I Left My Heart in San Francisco album reached the Top Five and went gold, and the single won BennettGrammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Solo Vocal Performance, Male. Bennett’s next studio album, 1963’s I Wanna Be Around…, also made the Top Five, and its title track was another Top 20 hit, as was his next single, “The Good Life,” also featured on the album. For the next three years, his albums consistently placed in the Top 100, along with a series of charting singles that included the Top 40 hits “Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me)” (from the Broadway musical The Roar of the Greasepaint, the Smell of the Crowd) and “If I Ruled the World” (from the Broadway musical Pickwick).

By the late ’60s, Bennett’s record sales had cooled off as the major record labels turned their attention to the lucrative rock market. Just asMitch Miller had encouraged Bennett to record novelty songs over his objections in the 1950s, Clive Davis, head of Columbia parent CBS Records, encouraged him to record contemporary pop/rock material. He acquiesced on albums such as Tony Sings the Great Hits of Today!, but his sales did not improve. In 1972, he left Columbia for the Verve division of MGM Records, but by the mid-’70s he was without a label affiliation, and he decided to found his own record company, Improv, to record the way he wanted to. He made several albums for Improv, including one with jazz pianist Bill Evans (following a disc they made for Fantasy Records), but the label eventually foundered. (Concord Records released the box set The Complete Improv Recordings in 2004.)

 By the late ’70s, however, Bennett did not need hit records to sustain his career, and he worked regularly in concert halls around the world. By the mid-’80s, there was a growing appreciation of traditional pop music, as performers such as Linda Ronstadt recorded albums of standards. In 1986, Bennett re-signed to Columbia and released The Art of Excellence, his first album to reach the pop charts in 14 years. Now managed by his son Danny, Bennett shrewdly found ways to attract the attention of the MTV generation without changing his basic style of singing songs from the Great American Songbook while wearing a tuxedo. By the early ’90s, he was as popular as he had ever been. The albums Perfectly Frank (1992, a tribute to Frank Sinatra) and Steppin’ Out (1993, a tribute to Fred Astaire) went gold and won Bennett back-to-back Grammys for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance. But his comeback was sealed by 1994’s MTV Unplugged, featuring guest stars Elvis Costello and k.d. lang, which went platinum and won the Grammy for Album of the Year as well as another award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance.
Bennett became a Grammy perennial, also taking home Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance awards for Here’s to the Ladies(1995) and On Holiday: A Tribute to Billie Holiday (1997). Bennett Sings Ellington: Hot & Cool (1999) was another Grammy winner in the retitled Best Traditional Pop Album category, as was Playin’ with My Friends: Bennett Sings the Blues, an album of duets released in 2001. One year later, Bennett paired off with a single duet partner, recordingA Wonderful World with k.d. lang. The Art of Romance followed in 2004. Both albums won the Best Traditional Pop Album Grammy for their respective years. In August 2006, Bennett reached his 80th birthday, and his record label marked the occasion with a series of reissues and compilations. The next month brought Duets: An American Classic, another collection of pairings with other singers on re-recordings of some of Bennett’s best-known songs that reached number three in the Billboard chart, the highest placing for an album in Bennett’s career. It also won him another Grammy for Best Traditional Pop Album. A second installment of Duets was released in 2011, and the Latin version (Viva Duets) followed in time for Christmas 2012.

songs in the key of life (Motown 1976)

2 de junio de 2013 § 1 comentario

Mi confesión musical… sí, el gran maestro STEVIE WONDER fue mi mentor y padre espiritual. En el ’76 y durante un viaje escolar a Andorra decidí comprar una cassette doble para escuchar en el trayecto, no recuerdo el porque de la elección (imagino q ya fue efecto del marketing) pero si recuerdo, con total claridad, el resultado de la experiencia. Vaya por delante q con mis 16 años ya había escuchado mucha cosa… pero allí (en el bus) fui físicamente abducido, para siempre jamás, al mágico mundo de la música; aquella era la música q a mi me gustaba. Fue como una revelación… intensas emociones transportaban mis pensamientos a mundos inventados, una vigorosa sensación “superior” recorría mis adentros convirtiendo en “inolvidables” las repetidas escuchas de temas como isn’t she lovely, ngiculela-es una historia, if it’s magic o pastime paradise. El disco de aquel músico negro fue la causa y razón, bendito seas Stevie Wonder! Después el universo infinito, la inmensidad inacabable de la música y este viaje incesante, repleto de paradas… y buenos compañeros. Destacaré el disco entero y un tema, al azar, para cumplir con los criterios de este blog “I wish” LISTEN… y funky!!!

wonder key

wonder plantas2

wonder talking

wonder mind
wonder hotter wonder jungle


wonder natural wonder fulfilling wonder innervisions

wonder love

Stevie Wonder is a much-beloved American icon and an indisputable genius not only of R&B but popular music in general. Blind virtually since birth, Wonder’s heightened awareness of sound helped him create vibrant, colorful music teeming with life and ambition. Nearly everything he recorded bore the stamp of his sunny, joyous positivity; even when he addressed serious racial, social, and spiritual issues (which he did quite often in his prime), or sang about heartbreak and romantic uncertainty, an underlying sense of optimism and hope always seemed to emerge. Much like his inspiration, Ray Charles,Wonder had a voracious appetite for many different kinds of music, and refused to confine himself to any one sound or style. His best records were a richly eclectic brew of soul, funk, rock & roll, sophisticated Broadway/Tin Pan Alley-style pop, jazz, reggae, and African elements — and they weren’t just stylistic exercises; Wonder took it all and forged it into his own personal form of expression. His range helped account for his broad-based appeal, but so did his unique, elastic voice, his peerless melodic facility, his gift for complex arrangements, and his taste for lovely, often sentimental ballads. Additionally, Wonder’s pioneering use of synthesizers during the ’70s changed the face of R&B; he employed a kaleidoscope of contrasting textures and voices that made him a virtual one-man band, all the while evoking a surprisingly organic warmth. Along with Marvin Gaye and Isaac Hayes, Wonder brought R&B into the album age, crafting his LPs as cohesive, consistent statements with compositions that often took time to make their point. All of this made Wonder perhaps R&B’s greatest individual auteur, rivaled only by Gaye or, in later days, Prince. Originally, Wonder was a child prodigy who started out in the general Motown mold, but he took control of his vision in the ’70s, spinning off a series of incredible albums that were as popular as they were acclaimed; most of his reputation rests on these works, which most prominently include Talking Book, Innervisions, and Songs in the Key of Life. His output since then has been inconsistent, marred by excesses of sentimentality and less of the progressive imagination of his best work, but it’s hardly lessened the reverence in which he’s long been held.

Wonder was born Steveland Hardaway Judkins in Saginaw, MI, on May 13, 1950 (he later altered his name to Steveland Morris when his mother married). A premature infant, he was put on oxygen treatment in an incubator; likely it was an excess of oxygen that exacerbated a visual condition known as retinopathy of prematurity, causing his blindness. In 1954, his family moved to Detroit, where the already musically inclined Stevie began singing in his church’s choir; from there he blossomed into a genuine prodigy, learning piano, drums, and harmonica all by the age of nine. While performing for some of his friends in 1961, Stevie was discovered by Ronnie White of the Miracles, who helped arrange an audition with Berry Gordy at Motown. Gordy signed the youngster immediately and teamed him with producer/songwriter Clarence Paul, under the new name Little Stevie Wonder.Stevie released his first two albums in 1962: A Tribute to Uncle Ray, which featured covers of Stevie’s heroRay Charles, and The Jazz Soul of Little Stevie, an orchestral jazz album spotlighting his instrumental skills on piano, harmonica, and assorted percussion. Neither sold very well, but that all changed in 1963 with the live album The 12 Year Old Genius, which featured a new extended version of the harmonica instrumental “Fingertips.” Edited for release as a single, “Fingertips, Pt. 2” rocketed to the top of both the pop and R&B charts, thanks to Wonder’s irresistible, youthful exuberance; meanwhile, The 12 Year Old Genius became Motown’s first chart-topping LP.

 Wonder charted a few more singles over the next year, but none on the level of “Fingertips, Pt. 2.” As his voice changed, his recording career was temporarily put on hold, and he studied classical piano at the Michigan School for the Blind in the meantime. He dropped the “Little” portion of his stage name in 1964, and re-emerged the following year with the infectious, typically Motown-sounding dance tune “Uptight (Everything’s Alright),” a number one R&B/Top Five pop smash. Not only did he co-write the song for his first original hit, but it also reinvented him as a more mature vocalist in the public’s mind, making the similar follow-up “Nothing’s Too Good for My Baby” another success. The first signs ofWonder’s social activism appeared in 1966 via his hit cover of Bob Dylan’s “Blowin’ in the Wind” and its follow-up, “A Place in the Sun,” but as Motown still had the final say on Wonder’s choice of material, this new direction would not yet become a major facet of his work.
 this time, Wonder was, however, beginning to take more of a hand in his own career. He co-wrote his next several hits, all of which made the R&B Top Ten — “Hey Love,” “I Was Made to Love Her” (an R&B number one that went to number two pop in 1967), and “For Once in My Life” (another smash that reached number two pop and R&B).Wonder’s 1968 album For Once in My Life signaled his budding ambition; he co-wrote about half of the material and, for the first time, co-produced several tracks. The record also contained three more singles in the R&B chart-topper “Shoo-Be-Doo-Be-Doo-Da-Day,” “You Met Your Match,” and “I Don’t Know Why.” Wonder scored again in 1969 with the pop and R&B Top Five hit “My Cherie Amour” (which he’d actually recorded three years prior) and the Top Ten “Yester-Me, Yester-You, Yesterday.” In 1970, Wonder received his first-ever co-production credit for the album Signed, Sealed & Delivered; he co-wrote the R&B chart-topper “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours” with singer Syreeta Wright, whom he married later that year, and also scored hits with “Heaven Help Us All” and a rearrangement of the Beatles’ “We Can Work It Out.” In addition, two other Motown artists had major success with Wonder co-writes: the Spinners’ “It’s a Shame” and the Miracles’ only pop number one, “Tears of a Clown.”
1971 brought a turning point in Wonder’s career. On his 21st birthday, his contract with Motown expired, and the royalties set aside in his trust fund became available to him. A month before his birthday,Wonder released Where I’m Coming From, his first entirely self-produced album, which also marked the first time he wrote or co-wrote every song on an LP (usually in tandem with Wright) and the first time his keyboard and synthesizer work dominated his arrangements. Gordywas reportedly not fond of the work, and it wasn’t a major commercial success, producing only the Top Ten hit “If You Really Love Me” (plus a classic B-side in “Never Dreamed You’d Leave in Summer”). Nonetheless, it was clearly an ambitious attempt at making a unified album-length artistic statement, and served notice that Wonder was no longer content to release albums composed of hit singles and assorted filler. Accordingly, Wonder did not immediately renew his contract with Motown, as the label had expected; instead, he used proceeds from his trust fund to build his own recording studio and to enroll in music theory classes at USC. He negotiated a new deal with Motown that dramatically increased his royalty rate and established his own publishing company, Black Bull Music, which allowed him to retain the rights to his music; most importantly, he wrested full artistic control over his recordings, asGaye had just done with the landmark What’s Going On.
Freed from the dictates of Motown’s hit-factory mindset, Wonder had already begun following a more personal and idiosyncratic muse. One of his negotiating chips had been a full album completed at his new studio; Wonder had produced, played nearly all the instruments, and written all the material (with Wright contributing to several tracks). Released under Wonder’s new deal in early 1972, Music of My Mindheralded his arrival as a major, self-contained talent with an original vision that pushed the boundaries of R&B. The album produced a hit single in the spacy, synth-driven ballad “Superwoman (Where Were You When I Needed You),” but like contemporary work by Hayes andGaye, Music of My Mind worked as a smoothly flowing song suite unto itself. Around the same time it was released, Wonder’s marriage to Wright broke up; the two remained friends, however, and Wonderproduced and wrote several songs for her debut album. The same year, Wonder toured with the Rolling Stones, bringing his music to a large white audience as well.
For the follow-up to Music of My Mind, Wonder refined his approach, tightening up his songcraft while addressing his romance with Wright. The result, Talking Book, was released in late 1972 and made him a superstar. Song for song one of the strongest R&B albums ever released,Talking Book also perfected Wonder’s spacy, futuristic experiments with electronics, and was hailed as a magnificently realized masterpiece. Wonder topped the charts with the gutsy, driving funk classic “Superstition” and the mellow, jazzy ballad “You Are the Sunshine of My Life,” which went on to become a pop standard; those two songs went on to win three Grammys between them. Amazingly,Wonder only upped the ante with his next album, 1973’s Innervisions, a concept album about the state of contemporary society that ranks with Gaye’s What’s Going On as a pinnacle of socially conscious R&B. The ghetto chronicle “Living for the City” and the intense spiritual self-examination “Higher Ground” both went to number one on the R&B charts and the pop Top Ten, and Innervisions took home a Grammy for Album of the Year. Wonder was lucky to be alive to enjoy the success; while being driven to a concert in North Carolina, a large timber fell on Wonder’s car. He sustained serious head injuries and lapsed into a coma, but fortunately made a full recovery.
Wonder’s next record, 1974’s Fulfillingness’ First Finale, was slightly more insular and less accessible than its immediate predecessors, and unsurprisingly imbued with a sense of mortality. The hits, however, were the upbeat “Boogie On, Reggae Woman” (a number one R&B and Top Five pop hit) and the venomous Richard Nixon critique “You Haven’t Done Nothin'” (number one on both sides). It won him a second straight Album of the Year Grammy, by which time he’d been heavily involved as a producer and writer on Syreeta’s second album,Stevie Wonder Presents Syreeta. Wonder subsequently retired to his studio and spent two years crafting a large-scale project that would stand as his magnum opus. Finally released in 1976, Songs in the Key of Life was a sprawling two-LP-plus-one-EP set that found Wonder at his most ambitious and expansive. Some critics called it brilliant but prone to excess and indulgence, while others hailed it as his greatest masterpiece and the culmination of his career; in the end, they were probably both right. “Sir Duke,” an ebullient tribute to music in general and Duke Ellington in particular, and the funky “I Wish” both went to number one pop and R&B; the hit “Isn’t She Lovely,” a paean to Wonder’s daughter, became something of a standard, and “Pastime Paradise” was later sampled for the backbone of Coolio’s rap smash “Gangsta’s Paradise.” Not surprisingly, Songs in the Key of Life won a Grammy for Album of the Year; in hindsight, though, it marked the end of a remarkable explosion of creativity and of Wonder’s artistic prime.
Having poured a tremendous amount of energy into Songs in the Key of Life, Wonder released nothing for the next three years. When he finally returned in 1979, it was with the mostly instrumental Journey Through the Secret Life of Plants, ostensibly the soundtrack to a never-released documentary. Although it contained a few pop songs, including the hit “Send One Your Love,” its symphonic flirtations befuddled most listeners and critics. It still made the Top Ten on the LP chart onWonder’s momentum alone — one of the stranger releases to do so. To counteract possible speculation that he’d gone off the deep end,Wonder rushed out the straightforward pop album Hotter Than July in 1980. The reggae-flavored “Master Blaster (Jammin’)” returned him to the top of the R&B charts and the pop Top Five, and “Happy Birthday” was part of the ultimately successful campaign to make Martin Luther King’s birthday a national holiday (Wonder being one of the cause’s most active champions). Artistically speaking, Hotter Than July was a cut below his classic ’70s output, but it was still a solid outing; fans were so grateful to have the old Wonder back that they made it his first platinum-selling LP.
In 1981, Wonder began work on a follow-up album that was plagued by delays, suggesting that he might not be able to return to the visionary heights of old. He kept busy in the meantime, though; in 1982, his racial-harmony duet with Paul McCartney, “Ebony and Ivory,” hit number one, and he released a greatest-hits set covering 1972-1982 called Original Musiquarium I. It featured four new songs, of which “That Girl” (number one R&B, Top Five pop) and the lengthy, jazzy “Do I Do” (featuring Dizzy Gillespie; number two R&B) were significant hits. In 1984, still not having completed the official follow-up to Hotter Than July, he recorded the soundtrack to the Gene Wilder comedy The Woman in Red, which wasn’t quite a full-fledged Stevie Wonder album but did feature a number of new songs, including “I Just Called to Say I Love You.” Adored by the public (it was his biggest-selling single ever) and loathed by critics (who derided it as sappy and simple-minded), “I Just Called to Say I Love You” was an across-the-board number one smash, and won an Oscar for Best Song.
Wonder finally completed the official album he’d been working on for nearly five years, and released In Square Circle in 1985. Paced by the number one hit “Part Time Lover” — his last solo pop chart-topper — and several other strong songs, In Square Circle went platinum, even ifWonder’s synthesizer arrangements now sounded standard rather than groundbreaking. He performed on the number one charity singles “We Are the World” by USA for Africa and “That’s What Friends Are For” byDionne Warwick & Friends, and returned quickly with a new album,Characters, in 1987. While Characters found Wonder’s commercial clout on the pop charts slipping away, it was a hit on the R&B side, topping the album charts and producing a number one hit in “Skeletons.” It would be his final release of the ’80s; he didn’t return until 1991, with the soundtrack to the Spike Lee film Jungle Fever. His next full album of new material, 1995’s Conversation Peace, was a commercial disappointment, despite winning two Grammys for the single “For Your Love.” That same year, Coolio revived “Pastime Paradise” in his own brooding rap smash “Gangsta’s Paradise,” which became the year’s biggest hit. Wonder capitalized on the renewed notoriety by cutting a hit duet with Babyface, “How Come, How Long,” in 1996. Since then, Motown has released a number of remasters and compilations attempting to define and repackageWonder’s vast legacy. His far-reaching influence was felt in the neo-soul movement that came to prominence in the late ’90s, and he also remained a composer of choice for jazz artists looking to incorporate harmonically sophisticated pop/R&B tunes into their repertoires. That only scratches the surface of Wonder’s impact on contemporary popular music, which is why he was inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 1989, and remains a living legend regardless of whatever else he does. After a decade hiatus, Wonder returnted to the spotlight in autumn of 2005 with A Time 2 Love, a comeback album on par with his classic releases featuring a tour de force of guest appearances including “So What the Fuss”, which featured Prince on guitar.

http://www.allmusic.com

Dakar-Kingston (universal 2010)

10 de marzo de 2013 § Deja un comentario

Yousssou N’Dour… cantante senegalés , icono de la música africana que ha coqueteado con el pop y los ritmos caribeños con estrellas como Paul Simon, Peter Gabriel o Bruce Springsteen. Defensor a ultranza de los derechos humanos y activista político ha visto recientemente satisfechas sus aspiraciones al ser nombrado Ministro de Cultura de su país. Destacaré “marley” un reggae donde muestra la raíces más profundas de los ritmos primigenios. LISTEN!

youssou kingston

youssou eyes youssou guide youssou joko
youssou lion youssou nothing youssou rokku youssou set

Some of the most exciting sounds to come out of Africa in the late ’80s and 1990s were produced by Senegal-born vocalist Youssou N’Dour. Although rooted in the traditional music of his homeland, N’Dourconsistently sought new means of expression. In addition to recording as a soloist, N’Dour collaborated with a lengthy list of influential artists including Paul Simon, Peter Gabriel, Neneh Cherry, and Branford Marsalis.

A native of the impoverished Media section of Dakar, N’Dour inherited his musical skills from his mother, a griot (oral historian) who taught him to sing as a child. A seasoned performer before his teens, N’Dourjoined the popular group the Star Band de Dakar at the age of 19. Within two years, he had assumed leadership of the group, which he renamed Super E’toile de Dakar. With the band accompanying his four- or five-octave vocals, N’Dour helped to pioneer mbalax, an uptempo blend of African, Caribbean, and pop rhythms. Performing for the first time in Europe in 1984, N’Dour and Super E’toile de Dakarmade their North American debut the following year.

N’Dour’s talents soon attracted the support of top-rated musicians. In 1986, his vocals were featured on Paul Simon’s Graceland and Peter Gabriel’s So. He subsequently toured around the world as opening act for Gabriel. His greatest exposure came when he agreed to be a co-headliner, along with Gabriel, Bruce Springsteen, Sting, and Tracy Chapman, on the Amnesty International Human Rights Now! tour in 1988. The same year, he performed at the much-publicized birthday concert for South African activist (and president) Nelson Mandela at Wembley Stadium in London.

N’Dour cemented his reputation in 1989, when he released his first internationally distributed album, The Lion, which included a tune, “Shaking the Tree,” that he co-wrote withGabriel. Upon signing with Spike Lee’s Columbia-distributed 40 Acres & a Mule label, N’Dour scored a Grammy nomination in 1991 with his first effort for the label, Eyes Open. He continued to seek new outlets for his creativity, including an African opera that premiered at the Paris Opera in July 1993. Recorded in Senegal, N’Dour’s album The Guide, released in 1994, included his hit duet with Swedish-born vocalist Neneh Cherry, “Seven Seconds.”

A steady stream of greatest-hits packages, reissues, singles, and even a few full-length records — including a handful on Nonesuch, 2002’sNothing’s in Vain, 2004’s Egypt, and 2007’s Rokku Mi Rokka — poured out during the late ’90s and into the next century, featuring N’Dourworking with artists from Etoile de Dakar to Gabriel. Egypt, which went on to win a Grammy, caused quite a cultural and political stir when it was released during the month of Ramadan. A documentary DVD centered around the whole affair, Youssou N’Dour: I Bring What I Love, appeared early in 2010 and included a biography of N’Dour’s career as well as extensive concert footage and film of N’Dour working on the Egypt project.

http://www.allmusic.com

 

3 de febrero de 2013 § Deja un comentario

Philip Bailey… la voz de Earth, Wind & Fire (junto a Maurice White); así le conocí yo, más tarde se emancipó y saltó al ruedo en solitario con su disco de 1983 “Continuation”. Es funk, es soul, es R&B… es negro. Me gustó especialmente en “Dreams” donde la participación de músicos como Luis Conte, Grover Washington, Jr. o Pat Metheny demuestra la valía de esta voz. Destacaré “something to remind you“. LISTEN!

philip bailey dreams

philip bailey conti philip bailey chinese
philip bailey family philip bailey soul philip bailey

Philip Bailey first gained fame as the mesmerizing lead falsetto of ’70s supergroup Earth, Wind & Fire . The singer/percussionist’s four-octave range set a high standard for upper-range pop vocalists. Bailey’s shimmering falsetto blended perfectly with Maurice White’s charismatic tenor to help the group build a reputation for exciting, live shows (complete with feats of magic) and innovative recordings. Six-time Grammy winners Earth, Wind & Fire had 46 charting R&B singles, 33 charting pop singles including eight gold singles. The group also won four American Music Awards and earned more than 50 gold and platinum albums. In 1982, while continuing his work with EWF, Philip signed a solo deal with Columbia, releasing his first solo LP Continuation. Then in October 1984, Chinese Wall was issued, an album Bailey co-produced with Phil Collins. The second single, “Easy Lover,” a duet with Phil Collins, became a worldwide hit, earning Bailey his first gold solo record. After Bailey’s 1986 album, Inside Out, he began making a name for himself in the gospel world, releasing four recordings on Word. Shortly after returning to the studio with Earth Wind & Fire to record the band’s Grammy-nominated Millennium Bailey collaborated with singer Brian McKnight and members of PM Dawn and Arrested Development to co-write and record another pop/R&B solo project, Philip Bailey (1994). A single from the LP, “Here with Me” charted #66 R&B in early 1994. In 1998, his album Life and Love was released throughout Europe.

In 1999, Bailey took another stylistic turn and signed with Heads Up International released the enhanced CD, Dreams, a smooth jazz album that features a “who’s who” of contemporary jazz artists, including Gerald Albright, Luis Conte, Everette Harp, Grover Washington, Jr. and Pat Metheny.

http://www.allmusic.com

 

¿Dónde estoy?

Actualmente estás explorando la categoría voz masculina en El Jazz que nos une.

A %d blogueros les gusta esto: