Archive for May, 2011

Tony Bennett marks 85th birthday with new Duets album

May 8, 2011

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Tony Bennett is set to celebrate his 85th birthday on August 3 with a sequel to the highly successful album Duets: An American Classic which was released in 2006 to mark his 80th year.

   Produced by Phil Ramone, the new album, Tony Bennett: Duets II, will be released on September 20.

   The all-star line-up of artists joining Bennett live in the studio will include Mariah Carey, Natalie Cole, Sheryl Crow, Norah Jones and Amy Winehouse – along with leading country music stars Faith Hill, Willie Nelson and Carrie Underwood.

   The Duets II album will also feature Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, Spanish singer-songwriter Alejandro Sanz, Josh Groban and John Mayer. Also collaborating on the album will be Michael Bublé and k.d. lang, who were both featured on the original Duets album.

   “I love the Great American Songbook and have been fortunate to have had the opportunity to introduce many of these songs to the public,” says Bennett. “It is a thrill to perform them once again with artists that I admire to create new interpretations of the music I love so much.”

   Bennett’s long-time manager and son, Danny Bennett, observes: “The Duets CDs – the first one and this latest project – truly shine a light on the creative process that takes place between Tony and each of his singing partners. It’s fascinating to witness how each song unfolds – all recorded live, as it happens in the studio.”

   Producer Phil Ramone adds: “The way Tony builds and shares the song is extraordinary. He is generous and warm and gives his partner great solo moments. Watching the duet come to its climax is thrilling. The preparation and care allows the guest to experience a live recording session as Tony records. It’s a large canvas with no style limitations.”

   The recording sessions for Tony Bennett: Duets II are also being filmed by Academy Award-winning cinematographer Dion Beebe. The film will be released as a documentary in conjunction with the new album, and will provide an in-depth study of Bennett’s creative and artistic process.

   The first Duets album – Duets: An American Classic – won three Grammy awards in 2006 and is Bennett’s best-selling album to date.

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The Who’s Keith Moon biopic delayed

May 2, 2011

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The Who’s Roger Daltrey has confirmed that a film about the late Keith Moon has been delayed because of problems with the script.

Daltrey has spent years working on the film which was due to be released in 2012 under the title: See Me Feel Me: Keith Moon Naked For Your Pleasure. But he now admits the project is in trouble because he can’t find a script that manages to capture the essence of the hell-raising drummer who died in 1978.

Austin Powers star Mike Myers had been tipped to take the title role. 

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Matt Monro biography ‘The Singer’s Singer’ now on CD

May 2, 2011

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The Singer’s Singer, the best-selling biography of Matt Monro by his daughter Michele, is now available as a 3CD ‘talking book’ as part of a new four-disc box set titled Words & Music.

   Three of the discs in the Words & Music box set feature an abridged version of Michele Monro’s critically acclaimed biography of her father, The Singer’s Singer – The Life and Music of Matt Monro. The audio book is read by Michele herself.

   The Singer’s Singer traces Matt Monro’s life from an impoverished East End childhood as Terry Parsons to a job as a London bus driver, to his phenomenal success as singer Matt Monro, and his eventual recognition by his peers as ‘the singer’s singer’

   As Frank Sinatra once commented: “If I had to choose three of the finest male vocalists in the singing business, Matt would be one of them.”

   The Words & Music box set also features a totally remastered version of the rare album Matt Monro Sings Hoagy Carmichael which has never been available on CD before. The 17 tracks include all of the songs from the original session tapes – including classics such as ‘Stardust’, ‘The Nearness Of You’ and ‘Georgia On My Mind’ – plus several previously unreleased bonus tracks.

   This set features every surviving out-take from EMI’s vaults, along with rare recordings from original acetates in the Monro Estate Collection. It includes every Hoagy Carmichael song that Matt ever recorded, plus a non-Carmichael ‘B’ side recorded during the album sessions.

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