VOCAbuLarieS

( 3 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Bobby McFerrin has always been a wildly restless talent, continually looking to develop fresh ideas for the human voice and place it in -- sometimes wildly -- different contexts from simple folk and pop songs to improvisational settings to strident compositional frameworks. His productions include duet records with instrumentalists Chick Corea and Yo-Yo Ma, as well as the creation of a virtual a cappella choir from his own vocal overdubs. All of this said, there has always been "something missing" from his recorded works that shows itself in concert, outside recording studio confines. On VOCAbuLarieS he seems to have found it. This is the work that anyone remotely interested...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Bobby McFerrin has always been a wildly restless talent, continually looking to develop fresh ideas for the human voice and place it in -- sometimes wildly -- different contexts from simple folk and pop songs to improvisational settings to strident compositional frameworks. His productions include duet records with instrumentalists Chick Corea and Yo-Yo Ma, as well as the creation of a virtual a cappella choir from his own vocal overdubs. All of this said, there has always been "something missing" from his recorded works that shows itself in concert, outside recording studio confines. On VOCAbuLarieS he seems to have found it. This is the work that anyone remotely interested in McFerrin needs to hear. Collaborating with composer, arranger, and conductor Roger Treece over seven years, McFerrin's been given a foil who not only understands his previous output, but can focus his ideas and take them to the next developmental peak. The pair employed over 50 vocalists from different genres and nations to create a virtual choir in the studio. According to a press release, they cut over 1,400 vocal tracks. The music here is "fusion" in the most seamless and beautiful sense of the word: classical, pop, soul, Middle Eastern, African, and Eastern European vocal traditions all move together, and encounter one another head-on. They meld into a whole where the seams show, but are elegantly aurally tailored to create something entirely new -- even if the material always isn't. Three selections here come from the controversially beautiful Medicine Music album, from 1996. But the versions here are radically different than the originals; the voices, rhythms, textures, and even ambiences of these voices have a more muscular quality, much more forceful and complex while simultaneously being more "listenable." The opener, "Baby," provides proof. In the original it was a simple folk song, a lullaby with African roots; here is it a harmonically challenging, intricate labyrinth where 22 singers accompany McFerrin as well as a rhythm section. "Wailers" is a pulsing chant with Middle Eastern, African, and Eastern European harmonies woven together by singers who include Sussan Deyhim, Luciana Souza, and Janis Siegel. "He Ran to the Train" combines -- in a wholly new way -- two tracks from Medicine Music in an explosively knotty, compellingly emotional call-and-response piece that is as rhythmically complex as it is harmonically. The set closes with "Brief Eternity," a new piece of modern sacred music that evokes everything from Gregorian chant and polyphony to John Tavener and Arvo Pärt. VOCAbuLarieS is easily McFerrin's finest moment on record as well as his most ambitious, and should win him some new fans even among cynics.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/6/2010
  • Label: Emarcy
  • UPC: 602527255569
  • Catalog Number: 001403602
  • Sales rank: 16,427

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Baby (8:04)
  2. 2 Say Ladeo - Lisa Fischer (8:44)
  3. 3 Wailers - Lisa Fischer (10:25)
  4. 4 Messages (11:22)
  5. 5 The Garden (8:34)
  6. 6 He Ran To the Train (10:29)
  7. 7 Brief Eternity - Lisa Fischer (6:13)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Bobby McFerrin Primary Artist, Alto, Soprano, Bass (Vocal), Vocals, Tenor (Vocal), Alto (Vocal)
Rhiannon Alto, Alto (Vocal), Soloist
Janis Siegel Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal), Soloist
Darryl Tookes Tenor (Vocal)
Lisa Fischer Alto, Soprano, Vocals, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal)
Alex Acuña Percussion, Bongos
Everett Bradley Tenor (Vocal)
Pedro Eustache Woodwind, Duduk
LaTanya Hall Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal), Soloist
Aubrey Johnson Soprano
Curtis King Tenor (Vocal)
Lauren Kinhan Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal)
Darmon Meader Tenor (Vocal)
Kim Nazarian Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal)
Beth Quist Soprano
Theo Bleckmann Tenor (Vocal)
Sussan Deyhim Alto
Roger Treece Alto, Percussion, Soprano, Bass (Vocal), Tenor (Vocal), Alto (Vocal), Soloist
Judi Donaghy Alto
Alexandra Montano Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal)
Sandy Anderson Soprano
David Whitworth Tenor (Vocal)
Luciana Souza Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal), Soloist
Michael Steinberger Tenor (Vocal)
Kristina Boerger Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal)
Richard Slade Tenor (Vocal)
Josephine Lee Alto
Rosana Eckert Soprano
Fletcher Sheridan Tenor (Vocal)
Amelia Watkins Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal)
Lincoln Briney Tenor (Vocal)
Ryland Angel Tenor (Vocal)
Cole Davis Soprano (Vocal)
Michele Weir Alto
Gayla Morgan Alto, Soprano
Elizabeth Farnum Alto, Soprano
Thom Baker Tenor (Vocal)
Dave Worm Tenor (Vocal)
Kevin Osborne Bass (Vocal)
Katie Campbell Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal), Alto (Vocal)
Michelle Mailhot-Valines Alto, Soprano, Soprano (Vocal)
Gary Eckert Bass (Vocal), Tenor (Vocal)
Andrea Figallo Bass (Vocal)
Albert Hera Bass (Vocal), Tenor (Vocal), Soloist
Joey Blake Bass (Vocal), Tenor (Vocal)
Daniel Abraham DeVeau Soprano (Vocal)
Sandra Anderson Soprano (Vocal)
Pierre Cook Tenor (Vocal)
Peter Eldridge Bass (Vocal)
David Root Tenor (Vocal)
Datevik Hovanesian Alto
Bonnie Denise Christiansen Soprano
Michele Eaton Soprano, Soprano (Vocal)
Darren Percival Tenor (Vocal)
Marlon Saunders Tenor (Vocal)
Don McCaslin Saxophone
Technical Credits
Bobby McFerrin Composer, Lyricist
Linda Goldstein Producer, Original Design Concept
Roger Treece Composer, Lyricist, Producer, Engineer
Jeff Tamarkin Liner Notes
Bruno Canale Engineer
Gary Eckert Engineer
Karen Goldfeder Liner Notes
Don Rosler Composer, Lyricist
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    New Directions

    If you are a fan of Bobby McFerrin from any incarnation, put on your seat belt. Bobby makes another turn into familiar/unfamiliar territory. And he does it with style and elan. It took me a couple of listens, but now I just keep it in my car CD player. Been there about three weeks and I only have one CD in at a time. Don't expect deep thoughts or moods; but they might be there. Just be prepared for rhythm and beat and words and flow. Sometimes I play the same track over and over depending on my mood; sometimes, just let it ride. I think it is the best thing Bobby has done in years

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 27, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews