Is it getting better? The answer is yes. We are also seeing a higher average sales unit each year in the studio releases than in the past. So, fewer titles are grabbing more market share in our industry. The same can be said for the top Last year, the top 10 were responsible for COM Gospel Continued from pay 19 drummer. Referring to the new album, Franklin says, "I believe, at some point, you have to make the spiritual decision of who called you, why did He call you, and who holds your destiny.
I love gospel, but [not] the gospel business. Rut I am more committed to the premise that we can't have gospel music without God and to keeping God first. We were getting away from the heart of gospel, where people were really moved by the music. Now the market is speaking loudly, and what they really desire is music that touches people hearts. Artists are less concerned with the styles, more with the message and its impact.
Our sales have been con- sistent — if not higher — across the board. More importantly, we believe that we were prepared to minister to that crisis. Our artists were called upon to provide lead- ership and insight. Jakes, whose Women Thou Art Loosed Conference is not only one of the largest evangelistic conferences in the country but is the title of his Jan.
Another project. Jakes, titled God's Leading Ladies, and the project is said to include some of the leading ladies of gospel.
I went to church all over the country, and everybody was singing his stuff. His is the testimony of stick- ing to a gospel strategy with great songs that touch the heart and fab- ric of the core church. That's always been our model at EMI gospel — and at the same time looking for opportunities to expose the music in other nontraditional outlets.
With Donald Lawrence and Brent Jones — from whom we're expecting big records this year — I know we'll be successful with that model. Not only does he bridge a multicultural community, but this is a man who is solidly based in the church experience and whose suc- cess demonstrates how vital the church is and that it can support its own.
It's been a long, hard strug- gle, but the record is heading to the ,unit mark. The key is that Kurt Carr is quintessentially gospel, and that's why people are so excited about him.
Not every- thing is going to be crossover. With guarantees to acts escalat- ing, promoters need to charge more for seats, but there isn't always a great differential between lawn and upper reserved ticket prices.
And whether an older populace is craving the comfort of a seat with an armrest vs. Comparing indoor and outdoor numbers for such acts as James Taylor and Tom Petty through the years, Eckerman says that "the audience has shown no resistance, even upscale, to that unstructured atmosphere on the lawn. They're on an even more blistering pace this year, proving that interest in this franchise has hard- ly faded, despite a hefty ticket price.
We know how to do the job. Eck- erman says, "We added 1, seats [in Holmdel. Last year, 4, were added on the lawn. At the 19, capacity Tweeter Center, a market of millions, CCE added 7, upper re- served seats. The original seating bowl was 7, It now has a small lawn accommodating 5, Tweet- er Center GM Bruce Montgomery "had been squeezing additional seats in the aisles and anywhere else he could for years," Eckerman says.
Sheds are competitive with arenas, because the cost of doing business in an amphitheater can be less for the act. As to more seats and less lawn, Val- lon takes it case by case. We can charge more and be more competitive with an arena's gross with 7, reserved seats.
The Cleveland Orches- tra is adding 1, seats at Blossom Music Center in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, putting reserved seating in the 6, range out of a total of 19, seats.
Molson Amphitheater in Toronto has almost 9, seats. Magid believes tours like Face to Face benefit the concert business in other, less tangible ways. It's three hours and 20 min- utes of hits, but beyond that, it's the way it is presented and the repartee between the artists on stage.
In these times, for the audience to have smiles on their faces from the time they walk through the door until they leave, that is an artist's and promoter's dream. You know you've made a lot of friends on a night like that. But theyl can't sell out one night in some of these buildings, and we're doing five or six nights.
At the end of the day, music stands out. Evidence may be found in that Widespread Panic has played three nights in the 10, seater for the past two years. This year, Ruffino thinks he has the group twice in one season, for three shows in April and three more in October. On the downside, Ruffino admits that "it's not easy picking bands that want to play 10, [seaters].
When they think they can play 10, they think they can do 13, He says that for many shows, there are minimal discrepancies in ticket price for lawn access. Each show scales differently. Any difference in ticket prices depends more on the act than the seating configuration, according to Vallon. In others, it's scaled, with gold-circle and reserved seats. The lawn drops off dramatically. They just sort of sell at their own pace, depending on the show," he says.
He is consulting on sheds under construction or consideration for Fayetteville to open in AugustMableton, and Cal- houn, and possibly in Rome, which are all in Georgia. City codes often make lawns more desir- able. That meant toilets were going to cost more than the stage because of all the plumbing, fixtures, amount of water, etc. Eckerman says, "I think so. That's customary.
There is a higher cost for seats. Pic- tured, from left, are Magid, Thrasher, and Page. Based on those sales, we wanted them to come back in April. But they wanted to do other markets, which is understandable. CCE's Jimmy Kop- lik promoted the show. The term of the agreement is three years.
Oregon Arena Corp. McCue explains that the concert season is limited to no more than eight shows, based on an agreement with local neighbors.
Last year, there were just two concerts. McCue is looking at outdoor concerts from June to Sep- tember. Capacity is The plan is to promote, co-promote, and rent the venue under the "same model as the Rose Garden. The event will make use of the Commons, the amphithe- ater area adjacent to the Garden, for its second stage.
He says, "We had 8, through there the last time Neon Circus] came through. The 1, Country Club subscribers get dis- counts for buying tickets to multiple country concerts. Not all promoters make use of the pre-sale option. Utsick says, "I smelled it; I thought it would be a good one. Jackson is the only concert booked for the stadium so far this year. Hayashi says it is difficult, because "we don't have a stage.
They have to ship one in and out, and it's expensive. HBO paid for additional costs related to the tele- cast. He says of promoting a tele- vised event, "You get a little bit more television advertising.
They advertised heavily. Rogers and Payne had formed New Park Presents, which has always pro- moted in that market, and once worked with Electric Factory Con- certs. Combined, Utsick, Rogers, and Payne have 85 years of experience promoting concerts.
Jack Utsick Presents N. Utsick says there are other venue purchases in the Northeast pending. According to Keswick president Roy Snyder, the theater hosts events annually, of which are con- certs. It was previously owned by CBM Wharton. The center opens in May The corporate attendance totaled Jan Feb- 3 S2. Washington, OX. New York Feb. S35 33, Jack Utsich Presents. Sunrise, Fla.
H 50 Fla Feb. Louis Feb. Houston Feb. Flo Feb. Wallingford, Conn. Universal City, Calif. Long Beach. Westbury, hLY. Grand Rapids. Mich Feb. Upper Darby. Universal City, Calrl Feb. Louisville, Ky.
COM 24 www. That's not to say that numbers were great, but things certainly could have been worse. As it stood, the industry overcame the impact of a shaky economy and catastrophic events to post a mod- of increased touring volume and est increase in gross revenue. According to numbers report- ed to Billboard Boxscores, gross revenues from U.
Attendance, on the other hand, was all but flat, rising an insignificant 0. Ticket prices are too high, fewer people can come to shows, and I don't see that getting better. This phenomenon of dollars outpacing attendance has been a trend of late, likely a result ticket prices. Decisions are being made. And, while promoters, agents, man- agers and artists are optimistic about what can be achieved on the touring front in and early numbers are encouragingfew such blockbusters have been rolled out so far.
Already, though, there have been some promising box-office counts registered. It's an inside thing. Arenas reaped the benefits of both quality and quantity in 1with the cream of the touring crop max- imizing the earnings potential offered by today's state-of-the-art arenas. While no arena tours of the stature of U2 or Madonna have yet been announced, Joel and John are already- putting up gangbuster numbers forand Neil Diamond has carried indoor momentum from into this year. And, while the concert business Blue Grape's Sebacious Signatures Networks' Furano continues to take heat over high prices — particularly for tickets — at least the merchandise industry can point to improved quality, whereas the issue of whether hand XYZ sounds better today than 20 years ago is certainly a matter of debate.
For touring acts, concert mer- chandise remains a prime source of revenue and a walking advertise- ment, of sorts. Il hasn't taken place out- side the U. Rapino adds. Rod Stewart will plav over 20 dates in Europe. Ozzlesl will expand in Europe. Westlite and Atomic Kit- ten are touring Europe and the U.
Ami we're pur- suing main other European- specific lours thai we'll announce shortly. In tiu- wake of dales in Febru- ary by Ryan Adams. While his business has recovered horn the uncertainty of lateLieberberg is aware thai the potential impact of events tat out- size the music business. A Jan. The pro- duction presented by ohansson sold out a year in advance, lours in the works for the spring and summer will feature Mary ] Blige.
Westfiie, Santana, Ellon John. Rod Stewart, Ozzy Osbourne. Both the artists and the audience are my clients. As long as you try to keep still a great song and a great per- formance. When you have a band that delivers, the merchandiser's job is that much easier. And numbers show that higher-than-average ticket prices don't necessarily can- nibalize merchandise sales. Cortes' new one-man show debuted Dec. In mid-February in Madrid.
Sagliocco reports th. In the realm of younger rock bands, Creed is standing tall, hav- ing sold out all 1 8 dates of a limit- ed winter L'. Acts that did well in While no announce- ment had been made at press time, it is believed that the Who will tour this summer, and sources say Fleetwood Mac will tour arenas and sheds, beginning this fall. There is talk that Michael Jackson will embark on a limited run in May, and Lollapalooza may return to the sheds, booked by the William Morris Agency.
And, finally, it appears that a 40th-anniversary tour by the Rolling Stones, Sinking Ships (2) - Out Of Touch / Bee Honda (Vinyl), the all-time kings of touring, is on tap for later this year. These are always great acts to have because we consider them 'pump primers,' acts that get people out and going to shows," he says. CCE reported nearly 5, shows in and produced seven of the top 10 tours, 15 of the top The company will be just as active inperhaps more so, pro- ducing "at least tours," according to Eckerman.
And, while CCE provided arenas with one of the most lucrative touring lineups in years last year, '02 is set up to deliver a full plate of entertain- ment to CCE's numerous amphitheaters. From the developmental side, we're creating some packages that we hope are an example of one plus one plus one equals seven.
There are [also] going to be a number of festivals out Sinking Ships (2) - Out Of Touch / Bee Honda (Vinyl) year. I believe we are going to have a stronger festival lineup than ever before.
Superstar attractions, including the Stones, Joel and John, CSNY and now Creed, are pretty much immune to econom- ic fluctuations and ticket-price sensitivity, but, for the vast major- ity of touring acts, price, venue, time frame and radio airplay ail impact success or the lack there- of.
Always on Your Route! People are staying closer to home and preferring to do things as fami- lies, they say. January was the best January in the history of our company," Feld says. He cites "5, attending nine performances seven sellouts of the ice show at the Los Angeles Sports Arena and 1 1turning out for a a. The circus, a year-old tra- dition, is the major beneficiary; he adds: "The circus is universal. The demographics are broader.
Radio IMs- ney IJiie! For the first time, there will be a ticket charge. Radio Disney has enlisted Creative Artists Agency to secure acts and venues.
Jim Pastor, Radio Disney VP of sales and marketing, says the brand can serve an underserved segment of the market — families with kids — at the same time it serves its sponsors with new opportunities to "communicate their message in front of a key tar- get. Box This is the opportunity for some of our listeners to have their first live-concert experience.
Clear Channel Entertainment Family F. The product is not based on a TV show but on a video series, which has sold 30 million videos nationwide. The touring produc- tion of Veggie Tales uses three rucks and travels with a cast and crew of 2 1.
Hoch- wald believes that, overall, family theatricals are becoming a much more stable business, but it's still quite risky. Rocket Power features extreme sports skateboarders, roller-bladers, BMX riders and takes the entire arena floor for the production.
The core audience is aged It's a good husiness for Nickelodeon. This ultra-modem jew el on the waterfront hosts the world's most exciting events and attractions. With a flexible seating capacity of 4. What next? Rosenstein says that's being assessed now, and, if there is to be one, it will be announced in the next mondi or two. The question, he says, is: "Is diere die right type of pop star out there?
It also produces Bear and the Big Blue House. Aimed at agesit is also an adult attraction since parents grew up with the cartoon, which has been on the air for 32 years. Hochwald expects Scooby to drawpeople this first season. It boasts a cast and crew of 27 and moves on four trucks. The key to success is to keep ticket prices low, despite the tact the show has all die costs of a Broadway production: stagehands, advertising, rent.
It's hard work. With a movie, once you have it, you have it. In the live business, we have to earn it every day. I'll never forget working a Hank Williams Jr. Joel Peresman, senior VP of entertainment for MSG, says his market is able to present successful shows that The rest of the year looks good, as well, but Peresman doesn't count his tickets before they're purchased.
A year ago at this lime, I was pessimistic and it shed. Still, others — such as recent live successes F. Minutes fromthe Pennsylvania Turnpike and major international airport. It's easy to be here. There are a lot of reasons why we're see- ing shows go to arenas today — they are the highest-quality ven- ues out there.
The number of successful arena tours last year wasn't so much a trend as it is [that] the nicer facilities are indoors, and that's w here people are heading. If you're look- ing at producing the best event you can for the prices people are having to pay, you do it in an arena.
We don't play at entertain- ment. We live it days a year. Indeed, many of the top arena tours out last year, includ- ing Backstreet Boys, Madonna and U2, were produced com- pletely by CCE, and the company also produces a huge number of one-off arena concerts. Kven if the touring business does not suller this year, Meglen says, "I don't believe it will be as strong as it has ever been, because 1 believe people still push the envelope on ticket prices lo match the guarantees, and that is dan- gerous.
Ticket prices and guar- antees are all intertwined. There are two schools of thought: You can go with a high ticket price and get out as quickly as you can, or you can go with a lower ticket price and make your money over time, with more people coming. Different people and different artists have dilferent perceptions. II longevity is a concern for the artist, then that is the time to be sensitive to ticket pricing. If they just want to get in and take what they can off the table, then they can be less sensitive.
That's when bands should be touring because there's not as much competition. CSC's unmatched expertise has made It the world's largest crowd management company. CSC, together with its sister company, The APEX Group, can provide you with a total security package - from crowd management to personal protection, it's your one source solutionl CSC's corporate structure ensures that all branches have the necessary tools and support to succeed.
CSC provides real staffing solutions and finds the best people for the job and event. CSC has a large pool of talent and therefore can bring you the best staff to make every event successful. CSC works hard to understand its client's business needs and expectations. CSC is customer focused and service driven. CSC ensures that its employees stay on top of their game through training and on-going coaching.
CSC has worked every type of event imaginable, from concerts to sporting events to convention jV centers, large or small. CSC does not just promise the best service. CA v8OO. With so many sell-out performances, we knew it was time to expand. Fort Wayne's Allen County War Memorial Coliseum is renovating and expanding our arena to make room for even bigger audiences. Plus, we're adding luxury suites, club seating and lots of other posh amenities. With more than 55 million people within a day's drive, it's no wonder the Memorial Coliseum has become one of the top grossing facilities' in the country.
Don't miss out. Call us for all the data and floor plans, or check our website at www. And, surpris- ingly, with the higher ticket prices there is even more need to buy a shirt, if only for bragging rights. A couple of years ago, the trend was T-shirts, caps and stickers. Now that [merchandise stands] are accepting credit cards, tours can sell more expensive items.
And noth- ing is better for taking that concert home than a great souvenir. CAPS Certain types ol acts, particu- larly hard-music bands or ultra- hot pop acts, are known for double-digit merch per caps, but longevity is always a plus. And, when they connect, people go home with more than just the ringing in their ears. Perry points out, and some acts are more tuned in to this aspect of their careers than others.
Now that [merchan- dise stands] are accepting credit cards, tours can sell more expen- sive items. Obviously, styles depend on the artist's fan demo. They've also very likely made far more money at it than most anybody else. I don't go to lunch with Mick or any- thing like that, but 1 understand that he and the rest of their organization have a real thing for quality. On their last tout, they offered different items, almost everything imaginable, and they rotate their stock and do event-specific merchandise.
They also print stuff on-site. Perry notes. But, if you can give people not only what they're looking for, but above and beyond what they expect, thai cements it and makes the experience worth every penny — worth driving miles for, worth camping out for tick- ets, worth staying on hold. Thai is when the experience becomes great, and the industry can con- tinue when there is greatness.
This region delivers a strong local culture with a healthy mix of people from all over the country. These are action oriented people used to attractions such as the Charlotte Hornets. Their very serious shopping habits support 6 area malls. And they're going to love this place. You're gonna love it too! Seating for 5. Get in on this action right now. Call or e-mail for Mark Chappuis for dates, details, and floor plans.
Dotted with hits of Idol chatter throughout he makes fun of his No. Songs deal with familiar themes women, booze, and cars, not necessarily in that order while playfully merging elements of surf, rockabilly, and punk. The smok- ing "Calaxie ," a humorous break- up song, starts in low gear before Heat puts the pedal down and rocks full throttle.
Aside from a couple of tepid joke songs tacked on at the end. Lucky 7 marks a return to form for one of rock's under- appreciated bad boys. With a superstar guest line- up, though, this is indeed a dream concert. Beautifully sequenced, the set commences with a Belfast con- cert recording of "March of the King of Laois. All of the original princi- pals — Peter.
Captain Hook, and Wendy — return in this ambitious animated sequel, in which our hero leads Wendy's daughter Jane through an adventure to recover her sense of imagination. The original score, com- posed and conducted by Joel McNeely, is the kind of Disney orchestration that typically illustrates such fare: melodic and elegant but with bolts of whimsy to embellish the onscreen action. Opener "That Day" — the lead single outside North America — is edgier, with a harder guitar sound.
The darker "Do You Love? And the potent "Goodbye" builds effortlessly from a melancholy ballad into a rollicking rock track. On poetic numbers like "Hurricane" and "Butterflies," Imbruglia shines — both as a singer with a breathy but sweet voice and as a songwriter who packs the right blend of individual creativity and uni- versal emotion into each song. Out of the Loop shows him flexing his warm, James Taylor-esque baritone over tunes that range from sweet acoustic-pop "Cody" "I Remember" to country-laced rock CThe Difference.
Weigle's ultimate creative draw is his gift for writing evocative lyrics that are specific to his own gay life but are also universal to anyone who has ever fallen in or out of love. Commercially, he has an undeniable knack for weaving hooks that permanently stick Sinking Ships (2) - Out Of Touch / Bee Honda (Vinyl) the brain upon impact, as well as producing his material with a clear, crisp style.
Contact: markweigle. As they did for a decade in that group, gui- tarist Nerissa has written the clear- eyed, literary lyrics and sister Katryna has provided a gloriously eccentric vocal delivery Dave Chalfant and Lome Entress add backing instru- mentation.
Cuts ranging from ebul- lient folk-pop to Elvis-swaggering country etch an autobiographical tale: talented, would-be folk rock stars skidding into pre-mid-life crises. Lots of backward glances and relationship foibles punctuate this quiet collection, which is ideal for harmony addicts and dreamers alike. Moodroom proves that driving guitar-based rock can still be melodic and heartfelt, per- sonal lyrics can still be original.
Sounding reminiscent of Garbage and Belly without seeming imitative, the five-member modern rock outfit has a special talent for switching moods, starting a song with a spare beat only to switch gears deftly a minute later, bringing in growling guitars and a healthy helping of distortion. Other highlights include the drum-driven, bass-heavy "Declined," the poetic yet muscular "Soft Distor- tion. Varied, smart, and catchy, Hung Up on Breathing is an impressive first effort.
Miklos Sylvia Tosun Musk And you thought you'd heard it all. Russia, Israel, the U. The enduring core of the group remains Howard Kaylan and his eternal side- kick Mark Volman, together since the early '60s as surf-rock band the Crossfires. The set concludes with Ray Davies -produced material. Wes Aldridge, Bradley Bambarger. Jim Bessman, Leila Cobo. Jay DeFoore. All albums commercially available in the US. Tosun comes by way of Con- necticut, where she began performing as a child, eventually studying at Juil- liard.
Sunday brunch will never sound the same. Check out sylviatosun. The Bowling Green, Ky. Prophet, B. Scales, and Ron Clutch — serves up a thoroughly satisfying set of Southern-fried funk and soul- influenced rap. While some fans may remember Country Fried Cess, the group's indie debut, many became familiar with the group via the new set's lead single, "Awnaw.
Theater from which this album was compiled. Hot Rize was playing its first live dates in six years at the time, and the renewed vigor shows. Latin On her latest solo offering. A mix of mostly upbeat dance tracks in Spanish and English, Que el Ritmo No Pare highlights Man- tcrola's increasing ease in the latter language, as well as a decidedly more youth-oriented, street-wise sound than most Latin pop.
Manterola is talented, versatile her rendition of "Quiero que Quiera5 Volver," one of the few ballads on the album, is convincing and quite lovelyand by all accounts a hard worker who has an extensive film and TV dossier. Sadly, though, at various times throughout the recording. Man- terola loses herself in the vocal stylings of Paulina Rubin and Gloria Eslefan. Whether she has a distinguishing sound of her own is difficult to discern in this landscape of feel-good tracks, but there's no denying the possibilities in tracks like the more urban-sounding "Lihre," which also appears in English as "Tell You.
Tell Me. This alone makes for an intriguing, cohesive album, unlike so many sound- track discs that simply slap on songs never heard in the film. Relevance is given to Mexican acts, their significance increasing once the film is experienced. But the influence of various styles on contemporary Mexico gives the soundtrack and film an extra edge and sense of reality.
This could be the soundtrack to many people's lives. Sure, Latin Groove is entertaining, in the way your neigh- borhood band entertains at a neigh- borhood party. For the most part, this is fusion at the most pedestrian level, with montunos and refrains repeating ad nauseam under banal raps and very basic improvisation.
If only there was more seamless fusion, or a better interpretation and under- standing of what Latin music should SOUtld like, this compilation could get its groove back. Purists would argue that the two have nothing to do with one another, but this release by Galac- tic drummer Stanton Moore would suggest otherwise. Moore anchors the band with loose, loopy rhythms that are banged out with the enthusiasm of a kid in a candy store and the sensibility of a seasoned musicianas the music easily flirts with funk rhythms, Middle Eastern tonalities, bebop explorations, and just about every subgenre ever to influence a jazz musician.
Yes, my friends, this is the voice of jazz inand it sure sounds fine. The band was not the tightest out there, perhaps, but the energy was a thing of beauty, and its dedication to the Afrobeat groove of Fela Kuti was the real deal. Talkatifh incredibly tight, the musicianship is powerful, and, most importantly, in the process of honing their chops, the band mem- bers have lost none of the muscle and edge crucial to their sound.
Afrobeat is all about rhythm and groove, and Antibalas has assimilated these les- sons completely. Check out "War Is a Crime," a wonderful, sultry dance track in the best tradition of Highlife and Afrobeat. It's powered by fine sax work and a flawless rhythmic sense that matches the feel conveyed by the best Cuban danzon, mambo. Antibalas keeps Afro- beat real with Talkatif. Racked by Caroline. Telarc Atlanta's Tinsley Ellis has been soldier- ing in bluesville for nearly 20 years and during that time he has learned his les- sons well.
He wrote every song on the record, and there's a good deal of diversity in these 12 tunes. His vocal work is assured and real, and he can do whatever he wants to on guitar. Ellis' playing is all about feel and coloration. As a soloist, he's into completely differ- ent ideas on "Real Bad Way. Terfel fully embodies these sym- bols of male existential pain flawed wanderers searching for the elusive grail of wholeness — that is, an ideal feminine lovesinging with unusual richness, intelligence, and attention to dramatic detail.
The orchestral accom- paniment — which in Wagner is never merely accompaniment — moves with intensity, beginning with a scene-set- ting Overture to The Flying Dutch- man.
The highlight comes with two excerpts from Wagner's most luminous creation. On this, the band' s fourth album, fans will surely revel in the seamless merging of intricately wo- ven acoustic guitars and poetic vocal harmonies — elements that have only helped to ensure the band's place in Christian and pop music.
High points are aplenty here: The cascading electric guitar riffs and tones of "Disappear" are steeped in U2 references, and "Revolu- tion" is a listener-friendly straight-up rock song. On "Silence," haunting lyrics, coupled with hip-hop shadings, leave the soul yearning.
A blistering track like this is a fine showcase for the band's production skills. But Clayton-Felt, the founder of School of Fish known for the hit "Three Strange Days"passed away two years ago at the age of 32 from a rare form of cancer before these songs reached the public see story. In a pure labor of love, his family and friends stepped in to ultimately get Spirit Touches Ground released.
The posthumous project touches on everything from the beauty of love "Building Atlantis" to the general hardships of life "Backwards World" with ease and grace. Evangeline Made is Savoy's ambitious recording. Under her tutelage, such singers as Linda Ronstadt, Rod- ney Crowell.
Richard Thompson, John Fogerty. Nick Lowe. David Johansen, and Patti Griffin tackle Cajun tunes — in French, of course — and the results are certainly en- couraging. Quite the credible Cajun collection. Who knew? With millions of new fans now by her side, it's certainly possi- ble that lightning could strike twice via "Wild Child. But it is decidedly more robust in tempo than much of her other work, and as always, lovely and replete with dignity.
It's gratify- ing to see a pigeon-holed artist break free from the stereotypes that bind her to find mass appeal. Whether or not this latest effort breaks out of AC and meets with the same success as "Only Time" is actually rather irrele- vant. Lawson, M. He eases into this heartbreak ballad, letting disappoint- ment drip from the first verse like icy regret before totally unleashing the full torrent of his vocal firepower on the chorus. Penned by Lawson and Mark A. Peters, the lyric reverberates with the ache and disillusionment that accompany a relationship as it is unraveling.
Mark Wright's deft pro- duction enhances the sense of drama in the lyric and the emotional inten- sity in Lawson's delivery. He's an impressive new talent with a voice that has the strength to cut through the clutter. Crow, J. Sheryl Crow has been away for too long — her last studio album was in — but given some of the material that is redefining the top 40 airwaves, "Soak Up the Sun" is as reassuring as it is top-notch, honest-to- goodness musicianship. Crow's vocal is layered with some interesting effects, but other- wise this is as straightforward as it gets.
Look for Crow's fifth album. C'mon, C'mon, April 9. Campbell, H. With solo acts like Montell Jordan, Kelly Price, and Musiq Soulchild having already scored major suc- cesses across the board, the label is now getting into the group thing with Lovller.
The Los Ange- les-based quartet of Serenade, Buttah. Lorenzo, A. Douglas, E. Jordan, M. She's featured on the No. The song opens with a striking piano hook and a swirl of rubbery bass that to- gether thread a hooky instrumental backdrop that runs through the dura- tion of the track. Ashanti ably sings the blues about missing her man and run- ning back to him, all the while know- ing he's no good. Her vocals are layered with ample harmonies as she main- tainsa low-key vibe, allowing vulnera- bility to seep out from all sides.
This is an auspicious opening for a singer who is a good bet to be one of 's first new stars. It shouldn't surprise any- one to see this one making a bid for the top of the singles charts. Look for Ashanti's full set April 23— CT pelling songwriting. He's back on Sunbird, the label that launched his career, before he signed with RCA for his hitmaking run. Reuniting with veteran producer Nelson Larkin, Conley works the same old magic on strong introduction with the midtempo flow of "How It's Gonna Be.
She has so fully inhabited this Prince classic that you actually forget the original I recording for a brief time. But it's not that one rendition is better than the other — rather that listeners now have two sharply different, equally evocative takes on one of the better tunes that Prince has written.
Work- ing within a simmering, spare rock instrumental setting, Smith oozes with primal sensuality, gradually building to a full-bodied sex-snarl.
Besides being one of the more imaginative covers you're likely to hear anytime soon, it also has the potential to be the legendary I artist's first bona fide pop hit since I "Because the Night. The production is contemporary and shimmers with clean, crisp instrumentation, and Conley's evoca- tive voice is the centerpiece. His their forthcoming eponymous set finds the fine foursome identify- ing with those young women who date hustlers and the conse- quences.
Steeped in honey-thick harmonies and simple produc- tion, "How It's Gonna Be" is an all-around solid effort. In terms of instant credibility, it doesn't hurt that Sisqo co-founded and mentors the group. Coun- try radio programmers would do well to check this out. As he belts out this tale of a dimwit who just can't seem to leave high school and what happened there in the past, McMahon seems influenced by both aforementioned artists.
And the wonderfully ado- lescent "Jordan" is the most fun of the bunch. Not really tough enough for the Warped crowd but maybe too smart for the TRL set, Something Corporate seems on the verge of big- ger things. Martin, Rami, R. Lange, S. Jive Records, the stable of Britney Spears and N Sync, has added Michael Bolton — the seeming antithesis of the youth pop movement — to its ros- ter.
But this one is for the grown-ups, and it's quite a notable return for the once- potent chart force, whose image has suffered more than its share of humiliation over the past few years. The melodramatic power ballad is reminiscent of all that made Bolton famous: He squeezes every possible drop of soul out of the song and cata- pults it to the moon and back with a punch that no one giving him a fair shot could fault.
ACs will be the first to listen without prejudice: his suc- cess there seems a given. But whether or not this song breaks fur- ther into the mainstream is less important than the credit Bolton deserves for steering clear of inappro- priate pop trends a la recent efforts by Rod Stewart and Lionel Richie and simply giving all he's got to his best material in years.
Look for his first album of original songs since on April Wes Orshoskl, Chuck Taylor. Release deemed by the review edtorslo deserve special attc-ition on the Sinking Ships (2) - Out Of Touch / Bee Honda (Vinyl) of musita!
New York, NY. I'm not soft, but I don't have to glorify that other side. My music is clean with live instru- ments, something for everybody. The track's easygoing rhythm — produced by local St. Louis outfit D2 Entertainment — shares disc space with Midwestern bounce cuts and ballads on Pretty Willie's March 26 debut album. Enter the Life ofSuella. Pretty Willie, who began rapping at age 8, says he made a conscious decision to choose it over track.
I dibble and dabble in everything — something's going to work. The dinner is slated for March 8 at Washington, D. The label is dis- tributed by the Welk Music Group. While the album isn't due until summer, Donnie hits the road March 6 on a date na- tional tour opening for Honey James. Taped four days prior to the Gram- my Awards, the Image Awards — which also honor achievements in film, TV, and literature — will be telecast 8 p.
That's an interesting choice of inspirations when you consider that his homeland is hardly noted for being a soulful breeding ground. Some- times I also feel like an outsider.
I was born in Canada, but my father is Jamaican and my mother is from Trinidad, where I've also lived.
I didn't see my dad as being a star," Lewis recalls. It was kind of cool, but I didn't really make too much of it. The result was his first single, "The Thing to Do. The following year, he re- ceived another Juno nomination for second single "Bout Your Love. World Outside My Window wal- lows in retro soul with the influence of the aforementioned Wonder worn like a badge of honor over contem- porary beats. Recorded in Toronto and Philadelphia with producers Andre Harris and Vidal Davis, the album possesses a continuity only attained through working closely with one production team.
That move is paying off, according to the radio and retail communities. He says just enough for you to fill in the blanks and apply it to your personal situation. It kicked off Jan. In light of this, Epic is foregoing the conventional radio promotion tour, focusing instead on regional promotion in conjunction with the live tour. An In- ternet marketing campaign will in- corporate BET. But it's his delivery that makes the difference.
I have every confidence that people across the country — and around the world — will embrace Glenn and his incredible talent. Jr Featuring Dave Hollister. All ngtits reserved. In addition to preparing for the release of his sophomore album Game Time — due April 16 on Universal Records — and the April premiere of Pieces to the Puzzle, the Nickelodeon sitcom in which he stars with his dad. He'll play himself in the latter show — via animation, that is.
The episode, recorded Feb. His album, I'm Just Corey, bows March Corey says working with Romeo was fun, "especially doing the video shoot. Corey says he's not worried about being one of the few young singers to emerge amidst popular rappers like LiP Bow Wow and Lit' Romeo.
The album's first single, "Still Fly," was issued last month. Producer Mannie Fresh says this album will move "for- ward and backward" by staying true to the Big Tymers' style while exploring new musical terrain. He says fans should get ready for a new slate of catch phrases a la "bling bling". But one thing he says he is sure of is that, thanks to Hood Rich, "my kids can get what they want for Christmas this year.
Wil- liams says that a Cash Money Mil- lionaires tour is slated for the end of the year. Not even running away to join the circus will allow you to escape its influence — a fact the ever-popular UniverSoul Circus has proved during the past nine years.
Dubbed as "the only African- American-owned circus in the world," UniverSoul combines some traditional — and not-so-tradition- al — attractions. For instance, you'll see clowns, acrobats, and animals backed by the latest hip- hop music i. UniverSoul publicity manager Trania Charles says, "We include hip-hop in our circus because it's the music that many in our audi- ence can relate to.
It's an all-purpose cultural show. For more about this musically inclined circus, visit universoulcircus. Rhonda Baraka may be reached at rbS aol. BODY R. UVN11 A. QLT Ci. I ,-'. V"f :. Rhymes Featuring P. A--' 1 ilA'l, 1, M. LRU 1. J "lAllll. ARRlln RilA. O Ludacris Featuring Sleepy Brown 9. Ol :" 'IL '. FRl '. Blige '. Rl A' A1. Featuring Dave Hollister. AI,' 53? IVK'1 O. Ljlc- n. Genesis 2 62 58 51 MR.
RIAA r. CXKI umii 0'u. VNU Busineu Media. The funky track, which received an hon- orable mention, reveled in a do-it- yourself attitude, gloriously harking back to the days of British post-punk the SlitsNew York funk IESG. Ever LOVE. So, imagine our wide-eyed smile upon receiving a new two-track demo from the unsigned act The sassy "Tales of the Broken-Hearted Bitch" and the haunting "Dark Eyes" are equal parts Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott, Thun- derpuss.
Liz Torres, Felix da House- cat and the Neptunes. Sound too good to be true? Give both hypnotic cuts a listen and decide for yourself. All three Yascone siblings handle songwriting duties. She says "Bro- ken Hearted Bitch" pokes fun at "me and my past relationships. African-Americans are like animals in a zoo: almost extinct. Something's got to give. For more info, contact or In nearby Nashville, singer Scott Michael is also in search of a label to call home.
These days, Michael — who, before embarking on a career in music, clocked time at the United States Air Force Academy — is shopping a demo steeped in dance-pop flavors. Working with producers John Mattick and Chris Hinson of Note On Productions in Nashville, the camera-ready Michael has concoct- ed a handful of Euro-inflected tracks that bridge the gap between Depeche Mode's dark-tinged jour- neys and Enrique Iglesias' upbeat fare.
For additional info, contact Jang- ly guitars compete with bottom- heavy basslines, while kaleidoscopic synth patterns twirl above sweet piano tinklings and chugging beats. Dead center are rich harmonies, infectious melodies, and smart musi- cal references. Like Moby's Play. LHB's album, which at press time was without a U. Don't say we didn't warn you. These days, he's known as Simply Jeff, the versatile DJ who has helped fan the fires for breakbeat music. On March Of course, there's also some Southeast funky breaks, too.
Realizing how regional and minute the proliferation of breakbeat classifi- cations can be, Jeff jokes: "It's not gonna be 'nu-skool' 10 years from now. What are you gonna do then? Breakbeat Massive is poised to draw fragmented audiences who typically focus on one sound. It's quite an accomplishment. We have strong street teams and Internet mar- keting, so we can create a lot of im- pressions before it comes out Jeff has a huge audience, and already, there is pent-up demand Sinking Ships (2) - Out Of Touch / Bee Honda (Vinyl) his record.
Phonomental will soon release the first single "Hear the Feeling" from Divine Frequency, a relatively new venture for Jeff. It kept me busy and gave me an excuse to do different things. Simply Jeff is managed by Jon St. James of Fl Management in Brea.
For this beauti- fully mixed set, Brooklyn, N. With a knowing nod to a certain hip neighborhood in Paris, this funky, disco-splashed compilation is a French house-music lover's dream come true.
This seamlessly mixed two-disc set over- flows with a warmth that is all too often missing on contemporary dancefloors. Fans of Naked Music will not be dis- appointed with this ultra-classy slice of deep house.
VNU Builneu Media. Angels Live In My Town 7. Exit Strategy 2. Grace 3. The Furthest Place From Here 5. The Sound 6. Ten To Five 7. Int Chi ro 8. Roads Leading Midwest 9. Memorial All Paths Of Glory The Limit Lights Out - Never Stop 3. Blacklisted - Divorced shit this song rules 5. Iron Boots - Bizarre 6. Iron Boots - Locked In Sight 7. Keep It Up - Zero Tolerance 8. Snake Eyes - DC 9. Internal Affairs - City Of Angels Cold World - Stop Snitchin' Mind Eraser - World Unfolds Fucked Up - Drop Out Give Up 2.
Auburn 3. The Next Time I Go 4. Ghost Story 6. Deadlocked 7. Shadows 8.
What Is This Thing Called Love? - Erroll Garner - Move! (Vinyl, LP), Under My Thumb - Rolling Stones* - One Day Before From Altermont!! (CD), Nuostabioji Ateitie - Various - Svečiuose Pas Pasaką (Cassette), Ladytron - Seventeen (CD), All Of A Sudden My Heart Sings - Erroll Garner - Move! (Vinyl, LP), Dreadlock Holiday - 10cc - Clever Clogs (DVD), Upside Down - Risquée* - Risqing It All (CD, Album), Terrors Night Out, Faccia Di Plastica - Sergio Laccone - Facce Di Plastica (Vinyl), Poema Del Alma - Manolo Galván - Poema Del Alma / Hijo De Madre Soltera (Vinyl), Serenade - Ernest Tomlinson - Chandos Production Music Disc No. 3 (Vinyl, LP), Country Pie