Big [Bonus Tracks]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Bush
Though he's not the first high-profile producer in Macy Gray's career, will.i.am is the first to make a big difference -- but probably not the one listeners would expect. Gray, whose wonderfully woozy voice was always searching for the right songs and the right context, has usually sounded like a certain segment of '70s soul: the earthier deep soul of early Ann Peebles. Big, however, is the slickest album of Gray's career, with a production finesse that sounds like a different and opposing segment of '70s soul -- quiet storm, with its pristine sound, frequent synthesizers, fretless bass, and performances programmed to perfection. These are not the traditional makings of a ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Bush
Though he's not the first high-profile producer in Macy Gray's career, will.i.am is the first to make a big difference -- but probably not the one listeners would expect. Gray, whose wonderfully woozy voice was always searching for the right songs and the right context, has usually sounded like a certain segment of '70s soul: the earthier deep soul of early Ann Peebles. Big, however, is the slickest album of Gray's career, with a production finesse that sounds like a different and opposing segment of '70s soul -- quiet storm, with its pristine sound, frequent synthesizers, fretless bass, and performances programmed to perfection. These are not the traditional makings of a solid Macy Gray record, but Big is startling and, overall, truly appealing the first time those two adjectives could be honestly applied to Gray's music. In this slick context, the gritty character of her vocals comes into better focus. The songs, though still written Hollywood-style with credits often going to three or four or five writers, fit in well with her personality and are among the best in her career. There's no breakout single but there's also no dog in the bunch. Meanwhile, a set of super-sized backing vocals gives Gray the testifying chorus she really needs; the opening "Finally Made Me Happy" features no less than Natalie Cole providing backup, and if it doesn't earn airplay on Tom Joyner's radio show, it'll be a tragic omission. As a producer, will.i.am has had trouble in the past when attempting to diversify -- which led to a horrible Sergio Mendes record, Timeless -- but he works well here. There are only a few nods to hip-hop, one good "Ghetto Love" and the other one rather more difficult for "Treat Me Like Your Money," will the rapper gets in a pair of stinkers: "I love you like money cuz I love you a lot" and "Baby don't ask me cuz that's the way it is and it's like that and that's the way it is". It'll be interesting to see if past Macy Gray fans are willing to follow her into adult contemporary territory, while those who might like the new direction will be able to alter their perceptions of her. [The 2007 edition includes two bonus tracks.]
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/1/2007
  • Label: Universal Uk
  • UPC: 602517267503
  • Catalog Number: 1726750

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Finally Made Me Happy (4:02)
  2. 2 Shoo Be Doo (4:04)
  3. 3 What I Gotta Do (3:08)
  4. 4 Okay (4:09)
  5. 5 Glad You're Here - Fergie (2:54)
  6. 6 Ghetto Love (3:08)
  7. 7 One for Me (4:09)
  8. 8 Strange Behavior (3:35)
  9. 9 Slowly (3:54)
  10. 10 Get Out (4:01)
  11. 11 Treat Me Like Your Money (3:26)
  12. 12 Everybody (3:17)
  13. 13 AEIOU (3:16)
  14. 14 Breakdown (3:36)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Macy Gray Primary Artist, Background Vocals
Natalie Cole Vocals
Jay Anderson Background Vocals
Davis A. Barnett Viola
Ron Fair Organ, Harmonica, Piano, Wurlitzer
Chauncey Horton Drums
Victor Indrizzo Drums
Philip White Percussion, Background Vocals
Mike Shapiro Percussion, Drums
Dawn Beckman Background Vocals
Emma Kummrow Violin
Jeremy Ruzumna Keyboards
Igor Szwec Violin
will.i.am Keyboards, Background Vocals
Justin Timberlake Drums, Keyboards, Background Vocals
Mike Farrell Keyboards
Eric D. Jackson Guitar
Tim Izo Clarinet, Flute, Saxophone
Gloria Justin Violin
Teedra Moses Background Vocals
Jeremy Gregory Background Vocals
Paloma Ford Background Vocals
Ghilaine Gleishman Violin
Glen McIntyre Background Vocals
Khalfani White Background Vocals
Caleb Speir Bass
Damon Elliott Keyboards
Keith Harris Percussion, Piano, Drums, Keyboards, fender rhodes
Technical Credits
Mary Brown Composer
Ron Fair Producer, Engineer, Executive Producer, Digital Editing, String Arrangements, String Conductor
Larry Gold String Arrangements
Bernie Grundman Mastering
Courtney Johnson Contributor
Trevor Lawrence Composer
Johnny Mercer Composer
Allen Toussaint Composer
Philip White Composer, Producer
Frank Wolf Engineer
Joe Solo Composer
Mike Shapiro Composer
Jeremy Ruzumna Composer
Anthony Tidd Composer
will.i.am Programming, Producer, Engineer, Executive Producer
Macy Gray Composer, Producer, Executive Producer
Will Adams Composer
Justin Timberlake Composer, Producer
Mike Farrell Composer
Michelle Thomas Marketing
Jean Baptiste Composer
Betty Jean Newsome Composer
Tal Herzberg Producer, Engineer, Digital Editing
Jason Villaroman Composer, Programming, Engineer
Ethan Willoughby Engineer
Teedra Moses Composer
Jeremy Gregory Vocal Arrangements
Jared Gosselin Composer, Programming, Producer
Hylah Hedgepeth Creative Assistance
Remi Barlowe Contributor
Courtney Foster Contributor
Sunnie Swan Contributor
Caleb Speir Composer
Damon Elliott Producer
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