Toad The Wet Sprocket – Bread And Circus (1988)

OriginalMCFrontCover1.jpgToad the Wet Sprocket is an American alternative rock band formed in 1986. The band consists of vocalist and guitarist Glen Phillips, guitarist Todd Nichols, bassist Dean Dinning, and drummer Randy Guss. They had chart success in the 1990s with singles that included “Walk on the Ocean”, “All I Want”, “Something’s Always Wrong”, “Fall Down”, and “Good Intentions”. The band broke up in 1998 to pursue other projects but in 2006 began touring the United States again for short-run tours each summer in small venues. In December 2010, the band announced their official reunion as a full-time working band and started writing songs for their first studio album of new material since their 1997 Columbia Records release, Coil. Their most recent full-length album, New Constellation, was released on October 15, 2013.

Bread & Circus is the debut album by Toad the Wet Sprocket, originally self-released on cassette only in 1988, and re-released in 1989 by Columbia Records on CD, Cassette and Vinyl with altered artwork. The album was recorded while the four members were still in high school for a total cost of $650. The album shows a more youthful and emotional side of their music. Singer Glen Phillips wrote most of the lyrics when he was only 15 years old.

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In May 2009, the band announced plans to re-release Bread & Circus, out of print since 2001, in a remastered edition with expanded artwork and bonus tracks culled from the album sessions that didn’t make it onto the album. Their sophomore record, “Pale” would also get the same kind of re-issue. In 2010 the band signed a deal with Primary Wave to handle their back catalog and licensing. These reissues had been confirmed by lead singer Glen Phillips via Toad’s “Fan Questions” portion of their official website for release in 2011, but never occurred. Instead, a remastered vinyl LP reissue of fear and Dulcinea were released in 2018 through the band’s online store. (by wikipedia)

Toad’s first LP, Bread And Circus, was recorded independently (for $650) as the band played local bars. The band was soon signed with Columbia Records on the condition that Bread And Circus be released “as-is” – and it was in August, 1989. The band then hit the road to promote themselves and the LP. (by rockonthenet.com)

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This is the first taste of Toad the Wet Sprocket’s brand of California-flavored thinking man’s pop. Bread and Circus is a collection of songs Toad had worked up over two years of playing the Santa Monica club circuit, and the album doesn’t have the cohesive flow the band would find with later releases like Pale and Fear, but the songs are good from the get-go. “When We Recovered” and “One Little Girl” show two emotional sides to the band’s songwriting, and the superb “Know Me” portends Toad’s future efforts in one track — plaintive acoustic strumming, acerbic minor-key angst, and a soaring, defiant chorus. (by Troy Carpenter)

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Personnel:
Dean Dinning (bass, background vocals)
Randy Guss (drums)
Todd Nichols (guitar)
Glen Phillips (vocals, guitar)

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Tracklist:
01. Way Away 3.07
02. Scenes From A Vinyl Recliner 4.12
03. Unquiet 2.54
04. Humble/Know Me 5.13
05. When We Recovered 2.52
06. One Wind Blows 3.26
07. Pale Blue 3.22
08. Always Changing Probably 4.49
09. One Little Girl 3.25
10. Covered In Roses 4.26

All songs written by Dean Dinning – Randy Guss ´- Todd Nichols – Glen Phillips

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And he band ist still alive and well (pic from their website in 2019):

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Sam Brown – Stop ! (1988)

FrontCover1.jpgSamantha Brown (born 7 October 1964) is an English singer-songwriter, composer, multi-instrumentalist, arranger and record producer.

In a music career spanning more than 30 years, Brown is a ukulele player, and was a blue-eyed soul and jazz singer. Brown came to prominence in the late 1980s as a solo artist, releasing six singles that entered the UK Singles Chart during the 1980s and 1990s. Her solo singles, sometimes dealing with lost love included “Stop!”, “This Feeling”, “Can I Get a Witness”, “Kissing Gate”, “With a Little Love” and “Just Good Friends”. She worked as a session backing vocalist, working with artists such as Small Faces, Spandau Ballet, Adam Ant, Jon Lord (of Deep Purple), Pink Floyd (also David Gilmour), The Firm, Gary Moore, George Harrison and Nick Cave.

Brown released her debut album Stop! in 1988. Since then, she has released five studio albums, one EP and three compilation albums, but lost her singing voice in 2007 and has since been unable to sing. She has married once and is the mother of two children.

Samantha Brown was born on 7 October 1964, in Stratford, east London, England. She is the daughter of musician Joe Brown and session singer Vicki Brown. Brown’s first work in the music industry was in 1978 at the age of 14, when she sang backing vocals on the final studio album by the Small Faces, 78 in the Shade. She also worked as a backing vocalist with several other bands, including Spandau Ballet and with her mother on former Deep Purple keyboardist Jon Lord’s third solo album Before I Forget.

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Brown signed a recording contract with A&M in 1986. Her most successful song with A&M was “Stop!”, released as a single in 1988. She issued an album of the same name that same year. Other singles taken from the album included “Walking Back to Me”, “This Feeling” and her cover version of “Can I Get a Witness”. The album Stop! has sold over two and a half million copies worldwide, doing particularly well in the UK and Australia. Brown’s second studio album, April Moon (1990), included two hit singles, “Kissing Gate” and “With a Little Love”. Three further singles were released from the album: “Mindworks”, “Once in Your Life” and “As One”. She also played the ukulele.

Brown’s third studio album, 43 Minutes…, was made around the same time that her mother was dying from breast cancer. A&M, Brown’s record label at the time, were not satisfied with the album and wanted some potential hit singles recorded and added to the track listing.[2] Brown, unwilling to compromise and after a protracted legal battle, bought back the master recordings of the album and released them in 1992 on her own label Pod Music, a year after the death of her mother. Few copies were initially released, although it was re-issued in 2004.

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Brown provided backing vocals for Pink Floyd on their fourteenth studio album, The Division Bell, released in 1994 and accompanied them on their tour to promote the release.[2] Her involvement was documented on the following year’s Pink Floyd release, Pulse, in which she sang backing vocals and was the first lead vocalist on the song “The Great Gig in the Sky”. In 1995, she had a minor chart hit with a duet with fellow singer-songwriter Fish, entitled “Just Good Friends”. In 1997, Brown returned with her fourth studio album Box, released via the independent record label Demon Music Group. Tracks on this album included “Embrace the Darkness”, “Whisper” and “I Forgive You” which was co-written with Maria McKee. McKee’s version of the song originally appeared on her second album, You Gotta Sin to Get Saved.

In 2000, her fifth studio album ReBoot was released via another independent label, Mud Hut, and the single “In Light of All That’s Gone Before.” In 2003, Brown formed the band Homespun with Dave Rotheray,[1] releasing three albums. Brown also released several solo recordings in this period, including an EP, Ukulele and Voice. In 2004, Jon Lord released Beyond the Notes, for which she wrote almost all the lyrics. In late 2006, she undertook an extensive UK tour as special guest of her father, Joe Brown. The shows also included appearances by her brother, Pete Brown.

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In 2007, seven years after her last album, Brown released Of the Moment. She also returned to the Top 10 of the UK Albums Chart in October 2007, when “Valentine Moon” was included on Jools Holland’s hit album Best of Friends. That same year she lost her singing voice, and for as yet unknown reasons has not been able to sing since. In an interview from 2013 she explained that “I can’t get vocal cord closure and achieve the proper pitch simultaneously. It feels like there are some muscles that aren’t working.”

After a cyst was found on her vocal cords, she had the cyst successfully removed, but problems with her voice persisted, leaving her unable to hold a note.

Brown currently runs the International Ukulele Club of Sonning Common, the North London Ukulele Collective and the People’s Ukulele Brigade (PUB). Brown is also a patron of Tech Music Schools in London, made up of Vocaltech, Guitar-X, Keyboardtech and Drumtech.

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As well as her solo career, Brown has had a successful career as a backing vocalist and collaborator with other artists. She has worked with the band Barclay James Harvest (1984), David Gilmour (David Gilmour in Concert) and Pink Floyd, Deep Purple (In Concert with The London Symphony Orchestra), Jon Lord, The Firm, Gary Moore, George Harrison and Nick Cave. She has often appeared as a member of Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra and achieved further prominence with her 2002 performance at the Concert for George, which was a memorial to George Harrison on the first anniversary of his death, where she sang “Horse to the Water”. This song is included in the film of the concert, not on the album. In 2002, she was a backing vocalist at Buckingham Palace at the Golden Jubilee of Elizabeth II’s concert, Party at the Palace.

In 2015, Brown started teaching backing vocals classes at the Academy of Contemporary Music (ACM) in Guildford, Surrey, a school for rock and pop musicians.

Brown has two children, Vicki (1993) and Mohan (1995), with her ex-husband, producer and musician Robin Evans.

On 16 June 1991, Brown’s mother Vicki Brown died at 50 from breast cancer.

Stop! is the debut studio album by the English female singer-songwriter Sam Brown. It was originally released in June 1988, on the label A&M, and was distributed by Festival in Australia. Produced by Sam Brown, her brother Pete Brown, Pete Smith, Danny Schogger, and John Madden the album was recorded at the Power Plant, in London, England, with then-Pink Floyd member David Gilmour’s guitar parts on “This Feeling” and “I’ll Be In Love” being recorded at Greene Street Studios, in New York, United States. The track “Merry Go Round” has lyrics slightly adapted from W. H. Davies poem “Leisure”. The CD edition of the album includes cover versions of Marvin Gaye’s Can I Get a Witness and Ike & Tina Turner’s Nutbush City Limits.

On release, the album was received favorably by the majority of music critics. Brown’s most commercially successful solo album, it went on to peak at #4 on the UK Albums Chart and reached #13 on the Australian ARIA Charts. The album also reached the top ten in five other countries including Austria, the Netherlands, and New Zealand. The album launched three charting singles in the UK. “Stop!” peaked at #4 on the UK Singles Chart; “This Feeling” peaked at #91; “Can I Get a Witness” at #15. The album has sold over two and a half million copies worldwide. The album was certified platinum by Music Canada. In the UK, it sold more than 100,000 copies and was certified gold by the BPI.

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A fine debut, full of original songs with much more depth and things going on than your average pop record. A few songs like “This Feeling”, I’ll Be in Love” and “High as a Kite” may be slightly pedestrian, but there’s nothing here I would call filler. (by Kim Alsos)

This is indeed a real nice album featuring pretty good songs with a touch of Soul music and featuring musicians like David Golmour, Jim Leverton and Danny Thompson.

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Personnel:
Jim Abbiss (pedal stell-guitar))
Bob Andrews (organ)
Dave Bishop (drums)
Stuart Brooks (saxophone)
Joe Brown (guitar, mandolin)
Pete Brown (guitar, keyboards, percussion, vocals)
Sam Brown (vocals. keyboards)
Ken Craddock (organ)
Danny Cummings (percussion)
Jeff Daly (saxophone)
Christopher Dean (trombone)
Dinesh (percussion)
Peter Esswood (cello)
Paul Fishman (keyboards)
Simon Gardner (trumpet)
David Gilmour (guitar, vocals)
David Hancock Trumpet
Gavin Harrison (drums, percussion)
John Huckridge (trumpet)
Jakko M. Jakszyk (guitar, vocals)
Roland Vaughan Kerridge (drums)
Jim Leverton (bass)
Ian Maidman (bass)
Kevin Mazpas (synthesizer)
Kate Musker (viola)
Richard Newman (drums, vocals)
Rex O’Dell (trombone)
Phil Palmer (guitar)
Ed Poole (bass)
Chris Pyne (trombone)
Danny Schogger (keyboards)
Steve Sidwell (rumpet
Peter Smith Trombone)
J. Stringle (cello)
Stan Sulzmann (saxophone)
Jamie Talbot (saxophone)
Danny Thompson Bass
Bobby Valentino (violin)
Mark Wazton (violin)
Alan Wicham (trumpet)
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background vocals:
Vicki Brown – Margo Buchanan – Amy Caine – Helen Chappelle . Philip Saatchi – Peter Smith – Billy Vanderpuye

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Tracklist:
01. Walking Back To Me (Brown/Sutton) 3.44
02. Your Love Is All (Brown/Buchanan) 4.09
03. Stop! (Brown/Sutto/Brody) 4.56
04. It Makes Me Wonder (Brown/Buchanan) 4.36
05. This Feeling (Brown/Buchanan) 3.17
06. Tea (Brown) 0.45
07. Piece Of My Luck (Brown) 2.57
08. Ball And Chain (Brown/Schogger) 4.36
09. Wrap Me Up (Brown/Schogger) 3.13
10. I’ll Be in Love (Brown/Schogger) 5.16
11. Merry Go Round (Brown/V.Brown) 3.09
12. Sometimes You Just Don’t Know (Brown/Malloy/Brennan) 3.08
13. Can I Get A Witness (E.Holland/Dozier/B.Holland) 3.01
14. High As A Kite (Brown/Schogger) 3.26
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15. Nutbush City Limits (Turner) 3.13

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And here´s a pretty good acoustic version of “Stop” from 2003:

 

Sinéad O’Connor – I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got (1990)

FrontCover1.jpgI Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got is the second album by Irish singer Sinéad O’Connor, released in March 1990 on Ensign/Chrysalis Records. It contains O’Connor’s version of the Prince song “Nothing Compares 2 U”, which was released as a single and reached number one in multiple countries. The album was nominated for four Grammy Awards in 1991, including Record of the Year, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, and Best Music Video, Short Form for “Nothing Compares 2 U”, winning the award for Best Alternative Music Performance. However, O’Connor refused to accept the nominations and award.

The critically acclaimed album contains O’Connor’s most famous single, “Nothing Compares 2 U”, which was one of the best selling singles in the world in 1990, topping the charts in many countries including the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. This rendition of the Prince song reflected on O’Connor’s mother who lost her life in an auto accident five years earlier.[5][6] The single “Emperor’s New Clothes” found more moderate success, although it did top the Modern Rock Tracks chart in the US.

The album includes O’Connor’s rendition of “I Am Stretched on Your Grave”, an anonymous 17th century poem, originally written in Irish and translated into English by Frank O’Connor and composed by musician Philip King in 1979.[7][8] The first song on the album, “Feel So Different”, starts with The Serenity Prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr.

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The inner sleeve notes acknowledge Kabbalah teacher, Warren Kenton: “Special thanks to Selina Marshall + Warren Kenton for showing me that all I’d need was inside me.”

I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got received critical acclaim. In 2003, the album was ranked number 406 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.(by wikipedia)

I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got became Sinéad O’Connor’s popular breakthrough on the strength of the stunning Prince cover “Nothing Compares 2 U,” which topped the pop charts for a month. But even its remarkable intimacy wasn’t adequate preparation for the harrowing confessionals that composed the majority of the album. Informed by her stormy relationship with drummer John Reynolds, who fathered O’Connor’s first child before the couple broke up, I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got lays the singer’s psyche startlingly and sometimes uncomfortably bare.

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The songs mostly address relationships with parents, children, and (especially) lovers, through which O’Connor weaves a stubborn refusal to be defined by anyone but herself. In fact, the album is almost too personal and cathartic to draw the listener in close, since O’Connor projects such turmoil and offers such specific detail. Her confrontational openness makes it easy to overlook O’Connor’s musical versatility. Granted, not all of the music is as brilliantly audacious as “I Am Stretched on Your Grave,” which marries a Frank O’Connor poem to eerie Celtic melodies and a James Brown “Funky Drummer” sample. But the album plays like a tour de force in its demonstration of everything O’Connor can do: dramatic orchestral ballads, intimate confessionals, catchy pop/rock, driving guitar rock, and protest folk, not to mention the nearly six-minute a cappella title track. What’s consistent throughout is the frighteningly strong emotion O’Connor brings to bear on the material, while remaining sensitive to each piece’s individual demands. Aside from being a brilliant album in its own right, I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got foreshadowed the rise of deeply introspective female singer/songwriters like Tori Amos and Sarah McLachlan, who were more traditionally feminine and connected with a wider audience. Which takes nothing away from anyone; if anything, it’s evidence that, when on top of her game, O’Connor was a singular talent. (by Steve Huey)

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Personnel:
David Munday (guitar, piano)
Philip King (background vocals)
Sinéad O’Connor (vocals, guitar, keyboards, percussion, programming)
Marco Pirroni (guitar)
John Reynolds (drums)
Andy Rourke (guitar, bass)
Steve Wickham (fiddle)
Jah Wobble (bass)
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unknown orchestra conducted by Nick Ingman

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Tracklist:
01. Feel So Different (O’Connor) 6.48
02. I Am Stretched On Your Grave (Anonymous/King) 5.33
03. Three Babies (O’Connor) 4.47
04. The Emperor’s New Clothes (O’Connor) 5.16
05. Black Boys On Mopeds (O’Connor) 3.53
06. Nothing Compares 2 U (Prince) 5.11
07. Jump In The River (O’Connor/Pirroni) 4.13
08. You Cause As Much Sorrow (O’Connor) 5.05
09. The Last Day Of Our Acquaintance (O’Connor) 4.40
10. I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got (O’Connor) 5.47

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Randy Newman (feat. Mark Knopfler) – In Sessions At The BBC Concert Hall (1988)

FrontCover1.jpgLand of Dreams is a 1988 album by Randy Newman featuring vignettes of his childhood in New Orleans. The best-known song on the album is “It’s Money That Matters”, which rose to the top of the Mainstream Rock chart for two weeks (and peaked at #60 on the Hot 100), to become Newman’s only number one hit on any U.S. chart; it features Mark Knopfler on guitar (by wikipedia)

In November 1988, Randy Newman recorded his album Land of dreams on which Mark Knopfler played on several tracks. As a promotion for the album, Randy and Mark appeared in various shows and played some tracks. Some rare recordings and rarely performed songs. Very interesting interview, mainly with Randy Newman but also with Mark Knopfler.

And here is this very intimate session.

What a great treat – Randy Newman and Knopfler !

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Personnel:
Mark Knopfler (guitar)
Randy Newman(piano, vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. Dixie Flyer 3.44
02, Inteview with Randy and Mark 4.50
03. Roll With The Punches 3.37
04. Interview with Randy and Mark 3.21
05. You’ve Gotta Move On 3.49
06. Interview with Randy and Mark 3.48
07. Blue Monday 1.28
08. Interview with Randy and Mark 1.31
09. Bad News From Home 2.55
10. Interview with Randy and Mark 2.48

All songs written by Randy Newman

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Sade – Stronger Than Life (1988)

FrontCover1.jpgStronger Than Pride is the third studio album by English band Sade (Adu). It was released by Epic Records in the United States on 5 April 1988 and in the United Kingdom on 3 May 1988. In September 2018, Pitchfork placed the album at number 37 on its list of The 200 Best Albums of the 1980s. (by wikipedia)

After two LPs with little or no energy, Sade demonstrated some intensity and fire on her third release. Whether that was just an attempt to change the pace a bit or a genuine new direction, she had more animation in her delivery on such songs as “Haunt Me,” “Give It Up,” and the hit “Paradise.” Not that she was suddenly singing in a soulful or bluesy manner; rather, Sade’s dry and introspective tone now had a little more edge, and the lyrics were ironic as well as reflective. This was her third consecutive multi-platinum album, and it matched the two-million-plus sales level of her debut. (by Ron Wynn)

Like Wally Pipp, who took a day off from the Yankee lineup and was permanently replaced by Lou Gehrig, Sade has risked usurpation by more talented players during her long weekend away from recording. In that three-year break, the soft-female-soul market, which the remarkable success of her 1984 debut stimulated, has been filled by a rush of other artists, some far superior (Anita Baker, Regina Belle), some nearly inept (Swing Out Sister). But Sade needn’t worry about being eclipsed by more talented singers – the key to her appeal is not the pure prowess of her voice but its poise and presence. In lieu of Baker’s gospel-based emotions, Sade offers cool composure. She has designed a distinctive sound and established herself as a diva simply by assuming the image of one.

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If it’s possible, Stronger Than Pride is even wispier than Sade’s two previous albums; it’s so thin and understated that it leaves a mist hanging over the turntable (or, more likely, the CD player). Her lyrics are mostly brief pillow notes, with their hooks chanted over and over.

Serving as producer for the first time, Sade curbs Stuart Matthewman’s dramatic sax lines, the crucial ingredient of “Smooth Operator,” in favor of an ensemble grace centered on the deft bump of Paul Denman’s bass. Brisk urban tracks like the hit “Paradise” alternate with acoustic material inspired by Brazilian bossa nova, but the sensual ambiance is soon spoiled by the dearth of melodies; the album is so tasteful and restrained it’s dull. (by Rob Tannenbaum – Rolling Stone Nr. 532)

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Personnel:
Sade Adu (vocals)
Paul S. Denman (bass)
Andrew Hale (keyboards)
Stuart Matthewman (guitar, saxophone)
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Martin Ditcham (drums, percussion)
Gordon Hunte (guitar on 02. + 08.)
Jake Jacas (trombone)
James McMillan (trumpet)
Leroy Osbourne (vocals)
Gavyn Wright (violin on 04.)

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Tracklist:
01. Love Is Stronger Than Pride (Adu/Hale/Matthewman) 4.20
02. Paradise (Adu/Hale/Matthewman/Denman) 4.05
03. Nothing Can Come Between Us (Adu/Matthewman/Hale) 4.25
04. Haunt Me (Adu/Matthewman) 5.53
05. Turn My Back On You (Adu/Hale/Matthewman) 6.09
06. Keep Looking (Adu/Hale) 5.24
07. Clean Heart (Adu/Matthewman/Hale) 4.04
08. Give It Up (Adu/Matthewman/Hale) 3.53
09. I Never Thought I’d See The Day (Adu/Osbourne) 4.16
10. Siempre Hay Esperanza (Matthewman/Adu/Osbourne) 5.16

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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.

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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)

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Personnel:
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)

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Tracklist:
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

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Leonard Bernstein – Requiem (Mozart KV 626) (1989)

FrontCover1.jpgYesterday my mother-in-law passed away at the age of 93 … So this is the right music for the moment:

The Requiem in D minor, K. 626, is a requiem mass by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791). Mozart composed part of the Requiem in Vienna in late 1791, but it was unfinished at his death on 5 December the same year. A completed version dated 1792 by Franz Xaver Süssmayr was delivered to Count Franz von Walsegg, who commissioned the piece for a Requiem service to commemorate the anniversary of his wife’s death on 14 February.

The autograph manuscript shows the finished and orchestrated Introit in Mozart’s hand, and detailed drafts of the Kyrie and the sequence Dies irae as far as the first eight bars of the Lacrimosa movement, and the Offertory. It cannot be shown to what extent Süssmayr may have depended on now lost “scraps of paper” for the remainder; he later claimed the Sanctus and Agnus Dei as his own.

Walsegg probably intended to pass the Requiem off as his own composition, as he is known to have done with other works. This plan was frustrated by a public benefit performance for Mozart’s widow Constanze. She was responsible for a number of stories surrounding the composition of the work, including the claims that Mozart received the commission from a mysterious messenger who did not reveal the commissioner’s identity, and that Mozart came to believe that he was writing the requiem for his own funeral. (by wikipedia)

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Leonard Bernstein dedicated this performance to the memory of his late wife, the actress Felicia Montealegre. It was recorded during two concerts in July 1988 in the beautiful St. Mary’s Cathedral in Diessen at the Ammersee and has been available as a CD since 1989. Bernstein uses the Franz Beyer “completion” of Mozart’s unfinished mass. His tempi are predominantly slow, accents are sharp, and the excellent Bavarians, both orchestral and chorus musicians, achieve a high level of transparency despite the reverberant church acoustics. Bernstein’s reading of the score is neither “romantic” nor “authentic”: it is unique in its uncompromising, searing intensity. The four soloists are outstanding. All in all, this may not be your one and only performance of the Requiem, but it is immensely moving and it will stay with you. Get it while you can. (Gerhard P. Knapp)

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Personnel:
Choir and Symphony-Orchestra of the Bayerischen Rundfunks conducted by Leonard Bernstein
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Maria Ewing (Sopran)
Jerry Hadley (Tenor)
Cornelius Hauptmann (Bass)
Marie McLaughlin (Sopran)
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Friedemann Winklhofer (organ)

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Tracklist:

Introitus:
01. Requiem 6.39

Kyrie:
02 Kyrie 2.45

Sequentia:
03. Dies Irae 1.43
04. Tuba Mirum 4.28
05. Rex Tremendae 2.42
06. Recordare 5.42
07. Confutatis 2.21
08. Lacrimosa 5.36

Offertorium:
09. Domine Jesu 3.28
10. Hostias 3.59

Sanctus:
11. Sanctus 1.48

Benedictus:
12. Benedictus 5.14

Agnus Dei:
13. Agnus Dei 4.53

Communio:
14. Lux Aeterna 6.44

Music composed Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart with additions from Joseph Eybler und Franz Xaver Süßmayr

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