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Be Not Nobody

Be Not Nobody

4.8 64
by Vanessa Carlton

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Less damaged than Fiona Apple and more grounded than Tori Amos, 22-year-old Vanessa Carlton has the kind of old-soul voice that older souls wouldn't mind spending time with. On Be Not Nobody, she wends her way through a solid debut grounded in a journey of self-discovery and love. A former ballerina,


Less damaged than Fiona Apple and more grounded than Tori Amos, 22-year-old Vanessa Carlton has the kind of old-soul voice that older souls wouldn't mind spending time with. On Be Not Nobody, she wends her way through a solid debut grounded in a journey of self-discovery and love. A former ballerina, Carlton launches her new career auspiciously, under the guidance of her record label's president and backed by a full orchestra to complement the fluid piano style Carlton honed with the help of her mother, a music teacher. The stunning results range from the breezy breakout single "A Thousand Miles" -- which, with its delicate piano runs and jaunty beat, is reminiscent of a Gen-Y version of Marc Cohn's early-'90s Grammy winner "Walking in Memphis" -- to the sweeping optimism of "Ordinary Day." Elsewhere, Carlton sheds the strings and uses stabbing, piano-driven counter-rhythms, rumbling bass, and a desperate edge in her voice to pump up the palpable tension in "Prince." Equally notable is a sinister, jam-session version of the Rolling Stones' "Paint It Black." As her debut's title foretells, Vanessa Carlton is a major somebody on the verge of resurrecting the female singer-songwriter movement that last showed its alluring face in the mid-'90s. Lilith Fair 2002, anyone?

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Vanessa Carlton probably couldn't have happened without Alicia Keys, but that doesn't mean they sound the same. Both artists are preternaturally talented and write on keyboards, sounding much older than their years. The difference is, Carlton pretty much revels in her advanced years, creating a record that recalls the lush ambition of Keys, but also the soul-searching of Fiona Apple and the precise intricacies of Rick Wakeman. Certainly, this wasn't something she planned to evoke, but the end result is pretty impressive all the same, because it's so well crafted, from both Carlton and her producer, Ron Fair, who doesn't stop her from taking leaps that could potentially prove embarrassing. And there are embarrassing moments on her debut, Be Not Nobody, the most notable of those is a ham-fisted, melodramatic cover of the Stones' "Paint It, Black," which for all the world feels like a single dictated by the studio. That's the nadir of the album, but the rest is charmingly ambitious and often quite accomplished. Take the lead single, "A Thousand Miles" -- as it moves from its solo piano opening to bombastic orchestral-backed choruses, the result isn't overwhelming, it's sweet, multi-layered, and appealing. And most of her debut album follows that lead, often overflowing with soaring strings, intimate pianos, crooned vocals, and pretty melodies, yet it all gels because Carlton shows the potential of a songwriter who can convey her emotions through her songcraft. Sure, some of Be Not Nobody is naïve, but much of it's well crafted and nearly all of it is endearing; it's a rare debut that is quite enjoyable in its own right yet is almost more enticing because of what it suggests that she could do next.

Product Details

Release Date:


Album Credits

Performance Credits

Vanessa Carlton   Primary Artist,Piano,Vocals
Bruce Dukov   Violin
Sid Page   Violin
Bob Adcock   Cello
Alex Al   Electric Upright Bass
Chuck Berghofer   Upright Bass
Charlie Bisharat   Violin
Jacqueline Brand   Violin
Luis Conte   Percussion
Mathew Cooker   Viola
Larry Corbett   Cello
Brian Dembow   Viola
Joel Derouin   Violin
Stephen Erdody   Cello
Ron Fair   Organ,Harmonica,Conductor,Vibes
Kirstin Fife   Violin
Armen Garabedian   Violin
Berj Garabedian   Violin
John Goux   Dulcimer,Guitar,Sitar
Susan Greenberg   Woodwind
Alan Grunfeld   Violin
Clayton Haslop   Violin
Trey Henry   Double Bass
Dan Higgins   Recorder,Woodwind
Randy Kerber   Conductor
Armen Ksadjikian   Cello
David Low   Cello
Rene Mandel   Violin
Tommy Morgan   Harmonica
Robin Olson   Violin
Simon Oswell   Viola
Katia Popov   Violin
Barbara Porter   Violin
Emil Richards   Vibes
Mark Robertson   Violin
Anatoly Rosinsky   Violin
David Shostac   Woodwind
Sheridon Stokes   Woodwind
Cecilia Tsan   Cello
John Wittenberg   Violin
Margaret Wooten   Violin
Ken Yerke   Violin
Gayle Levant   Harp
Dmitri Boviard   Viola
Karen Elaine Bakunin   Viola
Suzie Katayama   Cello
Leland Sklar   Bass
Natalie Leggett   Violin
Timothy Landauer   Cello
Hershberger   Violin
Eun Mee Ahn   Violin
Rose Corrigan   Woodwind
Michael Valerio   Double Bass
Abe Laboriel   Drums
Nico Abandolo   Double Bass
Cindy Ellis   Woodwind
Keith Grezen   Viola
Becky Bunnell   Violin
Tiffany Yi Hu   Violin
Karen Van Sant   Viola
Phillip Levy   Violin
Marlow Fisher   Viola
Paul Cohen   Viola
Franklyn D'Antonio   Violin
Tamara Hatwan   Violin
Mario de León   Violin
Sarah Parkins   Violin

Technical Credits

Mick Jagger   Composer
Ron Fair   Arranger,Producer,Executive Producer,Orchestral Arrangements
Randy Kerber   Arranger
Keith Richards   Composer
Bill Schnee   Engineer
Michael C. Ross   Engineer
Drew FitzGerald   Art Direction,Illustrations
Tal Herzberg   Engineer
Vanessa Carlton   Arranger,Executive Producer

Customer Reviews

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Be Not Nobody 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 64 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I totally love Vanessa's Cd. I especially like ''1000 miles'', it's the best. Keep rolling out excellent music like that, and you could be a diva!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is great. It is filled with haunting melodies and lyrics. The piano and orchestrations give each song its own intimate feel. From the moment I previewed the album, I was anxious to get my hands on it. It totally impressed me. I've been listening to it contently since.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think that Vanessa is a very talented and inspiring singer. Her music is sweet and simple, with a very important message. I hope that she continues to climb the charts and be blessed
Guest More than 1 year ago
After a long surge of talentless teen pop princesses, along comes some true talent. Vanessa Carlton's debut CD ''Be Not Nobody'' may very well help set the standards to upcoming 'pop' music. Carlton not only sings beautifully, but she also wrote 10 of the 11 songs on the album(the 11th is a remake of the Rollingstones tune ''Paint it Black.) Among the songs on the album include her first single ''A Thousand Miles'', the hauntingly ''Twilight'' and ''Paradise''. A mix of pop/rock with a touch of jazz, Carlton's debut CD is sure to please. Just a listen of each of her songs will reveal Carlton's seeming endless talents.
Guest More than 1 year ago
VANESSA is so good at the piano, I have also bought her sheet music book! She is so talkented and deserves all three grammys! Vanessa rocks!
Guest More than 1 year ago
How come I was playing a stupid game called name it!!, something I would never know about it. You just called player Crystal1 "Nobudy" and 1 CD is called BE NOT A NOBUDY!, Are you trying to insult a player? You ritch fake!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Vanesssa Calrton is the years best new artist. She is a local down to earth girl who has hit it big with her sensational talent. Not only can she sing, play the piano, and dance but she is also pretty hot. Be Not Nobody is an instant smash i recommend that you stop looking at it and buy it already.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love Vanessa! She's a dancer, and a singer! I love her music. You should definitly buy her cd!!! I Am !!!! :)
Guest More than 1 year ago
Be Not Nobody takes is in one word stunning. Ms.Carlton has it in spades she has the orchestral arrangements of 70's and 80's chantuese Kate Bush. The Killer piano of Amos. Except this time its better. Carlton plays it simple and straight. The Woman posseses a cool duality in bot some songs are dark and innocent. The woman has the potential to knock down icons like Sarah McLachlan who left us hanging in 97.
Guest More than 1 year ago
''Be Not Nobody'' is my favorite CD I've purchased in years!!! Vanessa's piano pieces in ''A Thousand Miles'' and ''Ordinary Day'' and absolutely amazing. She's a musical genius! The soothing sound of Vanessa Carlton will take your ears on a musical roller coaster. This CD won't be a secret for long. Buy it now!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Vanessa's sound brings a bitter sweet taste of pop & a bit of country to the world all around her everywhere. I say, the next big thing. My prayers are said for her to have the best in the superstar universe.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Not only is her music great, but she is a hottie and I heard she knows ballet. Vanessa, will you marry me?
Guest More than 1 year ago
Vanessa Carlton is the best singer of all. She sings and plays the piano well. I love all your songs especially "Pretty Baby"!!!.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Vannesa Carlton's album is fantastic. Her style shines through her unique voice, beautiful piano music, and stirring lyrics. It is an essential addition to every music collection!
Guest More than 1 year ago
''Be Not Nobody'' is a rare cd in which I like 8 of the 10 tracks on the cd. My favorites are ''Sway'' and ''More than Wanted''. Her cd makes me want to sing and learn to play the piano. It is very impressive and it is great that singer/songwriters are starting to reamerge in the music scene.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It's useless to compare Vanessa to any other artist, because she doesn't sound like anyone but Vanessa Carlton. She is a unique and passionate artist, with no frills. She is pure, raw talent. I have NEVER heard songs like Wanted, Twilight, or Ordinary Day.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Be Not Nobody is a beautifully heart-breaking CD. Vanessa's voice mixes with her deep piano notes wonderfully, and you feel her lyrics as if they are spoken from your very own heart. I love the depressing tones of a girl caught in the confusion of life. It's an EXCELLENT CD!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love two songs a thousand miles and ordinary day. I think you will to people. so long.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Vanessa's lyrics are awesome- it's cool how she wrote most of her songs by herself, and they really sound like they came from deep inside of herself. The only problem with this CD is that most of the songs sound the same. With that problem you get bored very easily with the rest of the album. Vanessa's voice is beautiful, but it's not the best voice out there I've heard. If you don't like listening to alot of slow songs, don't get this CD.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i love this c.d.! some of the songs are a little boring, but i love the songs "wanted","paint it black", "ordinary day", and "twilight" i like some others, but these are the best! GET THIS C.D!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Vanessa Carlton is my number one singer!!! My fave songs of hers are Ordinary Day and 1,000 miles. I love her songs and I just Know she will last for a long time. I just know she'll be a very big star soon!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I hate to say that I didn't enjoy this album much, because I loved her single "A Thousand Miles". The rest of the cd is pretty much filler, and I think she has more potential than that.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Vanessa carlton's new album ''Be Not Nobody'' is not short of amazing. From the opening riffs of ''Ordinary Day'' to the last trailing of ''Twilight''. ''Be Not Nobody'' is an album you will not be able to let go of. Vanessa's amazing voice, beautiful lyrics, and awesome piano playing make her seem so much older than 21 years. Vanessa is a very talented musician. This album contains 10 orginal songs written by Vanessa, and one cover. The 9th track on this album is an awesome cover of the Rolling stones ''Paint It Black''. ''Pretty Baby'' is sure to be a fan fave, and is easy to see why. ''A Thousand Miles'' is already a huge hit, and recently reached top 10 on the Billboard hot 100 singles chart, and # 3 on MTV's top 10. The next single ''Ordinary Day'' is sure to do the same. Each of these songs speaks to the listener in a dlfferent way. Part of the beauty of ''Be Not Nobody'' is the way everyone can relate to it. My personal favorites are: ''Ordinary Day'', ''Unsung'', ''A Thousand Miles'', 'Pretty Baby'',''Sway'', but honestly, there is not one song on this album i don't like. Make sure you get your copy of ''Be Not Nobody'' you won't be disappointed.
Guest More than 1 year ago
From the minute I heard her first song...wow what an amazing voice. This CD is so good I take it everywhere with me. Love her remake of Paint it Black! I recomend this CD to everyone.