Some Other Time is Diane Schuur’s tribute to the previous generation’s music, and is dedicated to the memory of her mother. This set is a pleasant mix of tunes by some of the premier American songwriters – the Gershwin brothers, Rodgers and Hammerstein, and Irving Berlin to name a few.
At first listen, Some Other Time seems simple and light; however, a closer examination will heighten the complexity of the music and the impressive piano solos. Randy Porter, who plays piano on some of the tunes when Schuur is not on the keys, served as arranger.
George and Ira’s “Nice Work If You Can Get It” gets things started. Schuur handles the melodic conversational tone of this song masterfully. “I’ve Got Beginner’s Luck” is another Gershwin song which makes an appearance on this CD. Schuur’s take on Irving Berlin’s “Blue Skies” is slower than earlier versions. She also re-paces Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “My Favorite Things.” Dan Balmer, on guitar, accompanies Schuur’s vocals and Porter’s piano on these songs quite nicely.
The closing tracks – “September In The Rain” and “Danny Boy” – are poignant and magical. In 1964, ten-year-old Diane recorded “September in the Rain.” And it appears here, static and all. It’s definitely one of the highlights of this collection. Included before the final track – an exchange between Diane and her mom in which her mother asks her if she knows “Danny Boy.” Diane promises that someday she’ll record the song just for her. She keeps her promise with a moving and heart-wrenching rendition of the Irish classic. It’s a perfect closing to “Some Other Time” and a sweet tribute to Schuur’s mother.
Schuur’s vocals are superb and the musicians who accompany her on Some Other Time – Randy Porter, Dan Balmer, Scott Steed and Reggie Jackson – are very talented. Some Other Time is a great jazz album that can be enjoyed by fans of any genre.
Nirvana’s 1991 Smells Like Teen Spirit marked the beginning of a shift in popular rock music – away from metal and hard rock, and dance – toward grunge and alternative rock. That song was the anthem of Generation X, for which Cobain became a reluctant spokesperson and role model.
Even though Nirvana was around for only a handful of years, its music defined a generation and is still relevant 14 years after Cobain’s passing. His legendary status lives on.
Salvatore Bono, was born on February 16, 1935 in Detroit. Sonny Bono began his career in music working for the record producer Phil Spector as a promotions man and percussionist. He composed songs on his own before meeting the young Cherilyn Sarkisian LaPierre in 1961. They married three years later.
Together, Sonny & Cher created one of the most magical combinations in music history. Sonny wrote, arranged, and produced some of their greatest songs – 1965’s I Got You Babe and 1967’s The Beat Goes On. They had their own variety show, The Sonny and Cher Show on CBS 1971 to 1974.
Sonny went on to become the mayor of Palm Springs and a U.S. State Representative for California. He died while in office from a skiing accident in January 1998. Cher gave the eulogy at his funeral, and The Beat Goes On was sung in his honor. The epitaph on his headstone reads “And the beat goes on.”
Bono’s contribution to the success of the duo and to Cher’s solo success is underrated. He let himself be the butt of the jokes, so Cher would shine. And it worked. Their sound was a unique mix of rock, pop, and psychedelic sounds, at times with political and social undertones. For people too young to know anything other than “I’ve Got You Babe”, here are some songs suggestions: A Cowboy’s Work is Never Done, Little Man, Mama Was A Rock ‘n Roll Singer Papa Used To Write All Her Songs, When You Say Love, and All I Ever Need Is You.
I’ve Got You Babe (1965)
I’ve Got You Babe (1987 on David Letterman)
500 Miles (Sonny & Cher tribute)
The Beatles first landed in America 44 years ago today. When they arrived at Kennedy Airport in New York for their first U.S. visit, thousands of screaming fans were there to welcome the Fab Four.
The filmmaker, Albert Maysles documented this historic event. Watch the footage below.
Natalie Cole, the daughter of the great Nat King Cole turns 58 today. During her childhood, she was exposed to jazz, soul and blues musicians, and she began performing at the age of 11, just four years prior to the passing of her father. While her father is legendary and she has a velvety choice like his, success isn’t alway inherited. And in this case, Natalie’s success has come through her own talent and hard work.
Her debut album, Inseparable, included her biggest R&B single This Will Be (An Everlasting Love), which has appeared in movies and commercials. This song earned her the 1976 Grammy for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance. She also won the Best New Artist Grammy that year.
Inseparable, I’ve Got Love On My Mind, Miss You Like Crazy, Sophisticated Lady (She’s A Different Lady), Our Love, and I Live For Your Love are some of her hits. Unforgetable, a tribute to her father, is her biggest album, and it reached No. 1 in 1991.
Since recording with Verve, the jazz label, Natalie has turned to more jazz standards and covers, giving them her special R&B touch.
Ask A Woman Who Knows
It’s been about ten years since we’ve heard new material from Taylor Dayne. Ms. Dayne has been busy doing other things – including singing and acting on Broadway and raising twins – and that’s cool, but this listener is glad to hear her do what she does best. With her new album release, Satisfied, Taylor Dayne proves to be at her vocal best. Welcome back, Taylor!
The first single, Beautiful, is a strong opener for Satisfied. It’s got a pumping, pulsating beat and a catchy chorus. The second track, Over My Head is just as catchy; while She Don’t Love You and Dedicated have reggae beats.
The rest of the songs, including the title track, are slower. The strongest of them is My Heart Won’t Change; it definitely has single potential. Crash is a great ballad. The last song, Hymn, is quite powerful and a nice way to close out the album.
Dayne covers three songs from three different genres. The Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Under The Bridge gets a soulful rendition. She pours her heart into Des’ree’s love song Kissing You. And her interpretation of the Rolling Stones’ country rock Fool to Cry is a nice surprise.
While another one or two high-energy tunes would be great, all thirteen songs are worth a listen. Surely some remixes of the ones already here would be welcomed at the dance clubs.
Satisfied is a solid comeback album from an artist with great vocal talent. If the title Satisfied is a promise, Taylor Dayne keeps it. The listener will be quite ‘satisfied’ with this listening experience!
In Don McLean’s 1971’s “American Pie,” he refers to the day Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “the Big Bopper” Richardson died in an airplane crash as the day the music died. It was February 3, 1959. Buddy Holly was McLean’s idol.
Buddy Holly was famous for “That’ll Be the Day” and “Peggy Sue.” Although his career lasted but a year and a half, Buddy Holly’s music did not die with him. He had recorded so much that his record label was able to release new Buddy Holly music for 10 years after his death. Seventeen-year-old Ritchie Valens scored with “Donna” and “La Bamba,” one of the very first Latin rock songs. And the Big Bopper was famous for “Chantilly Lace.” The small plane transporting them from Clear Lake, IA to the next stop on their tour went down in a snowstorm right outside of the airport.
For the meaning of the legendary song’s lyrics click here.