Michael Ball New Release 'Heroes' & Tour

by MarcB 10. February 2011 14:53

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MICHAEL BALL, the award-winning musical theatre star, multi-platinum recording artist and chat show host, releases a brand new album on March 14th.

'HEROES’ features 15 solid gold, classic songs which were originally big hits for legendary artists such as Tony Bennett, Johnny Mathis, Frank Sinatra, Neil Diamond, Billy Joel and more.

‘HEROES’ is a lush, romantic, late night album featuring torch songs, ballads, love songs and beautiful string and brass arrangements.

“I’ve wanted to record a late-night collection of timeless, romantic songs sung by some of my own musical heroes for ages,” explains Michael.

"It’s a tribute to the singers I grew up listening to, whose records I bought when I was a teenager and who, over the years, have taught me so much about singing and performing. I’m talking about legendary performers who have entertained millions of people all over the world and whose work simply never dates.”

The songs featured on ‘HEROES’ were hits in the 1950s, 60s and 70s and have stood the test of time with their universal themes of love and understanding.

‘Summer Wind’ by Frank Sinatra sums up a reflective mood while walking in the cool desert sands of Las Vegas; Johnny Mathis’ ‘Misty’ is from one of Michael’s favourite films, ‘Play Misty For Me’; the brilliant, dramatic ‘Joanna’ was a massive hit for Scott Walker in 1968; the beautiful ‘Play Me’ was written by Neil Diamond, one of Michael’s favourite songwriters and ‘Weekend In New England’, written by Randy Edeman was an American No.1 for Barry Manilow in 1976.

And there’s more…”Most people think of Stevie Wonder’s ‘For Once In My Life’ as the definitive recording,” continues Michael, “but Tony Bennett’s ballad version inspired me even more. I love it when you give a great song to a great singer with unique style. If ever there was a hero it’s Tony Bennett – he’s one of the most admired performers in the world – I hope I’m still working at 80 like Tony!” 

Billy Joel’s classic ‘New York State of Mind’ opens with the first few bars of Gershwin’s ‘Rhapsody In Blue’: “When I think of New York I think of Broadway, Central Park, Woody Allen’s ‘Manhattan’,” says Michael, taking his inspiration from the film’s soundtrack.

There’s also a bonus track…“I just had to record ’Avenues & Alleyways’ by Tony Christie…with Tony Christie!  When I was ten I used to watch the TV series ‘The Protectors’ starring Robert Vaughn; ‘Avenues’ was the theme tune and it’s stuck with me ever since.  Tony Christie is charming, stylish, very cool and I’m honoured that he agreed to record it as a duet with me for this album.”

‘HEROES’ track listing:

Track:                                Sung by/hit for:

1.  Let The Heartaches Begin       Long John Baldry (1967)

2.  I’ll Never Fall in Love Again     Tom Jones (1969)

3.  Play Me                                 Neil Diamond (1972)

4.  Summer Wind                       Frank Sinatra (1966)

5.  For The Good Times               Perry Como (1973)

6.  Misty                               Johnny Mathis (1959, 

7.  When I Fall In Love               Nat ‘King’ Cole (1956)

8.  You Don’t Know Me               Ray Charles (1962)

9.  Weekend in New England       Barry Manilow (1976)

10. New York State of Mind         Billy Joel (1976)

11. Joanna                             Scott Walker (1968)

12. I Can’t Help Falling In Love Elvis Presley (1962)

13. He’ll Have To Go                   Jim Reeves (1960)

14. For Once In My Life               Tony Bennett (1967)

Bonus:   Avenues and Alleyways   Michael Ball and Tony Christie duet

In May Michael will take to the road with the ‘HEROES’ concert tour and will be performing many of the songs from his new album as well as favourite songs from some of the many West End and Broadway shows in which he’s starred such as Les Miserables, Aspects of Love, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Woman In White, Hairspray and more. All the dates:

May 24th        Dublin Grand Canal Theatre

May 25th        Belfast Waterfront

May 27th        Edinburgh Usher Hall

May 28th        Glasgow Clyde Auditorium 

May 30th        Newcastle City Hall

June 1st         Manchester Apollo

June 2nd      Sheffield City Hall

June 4th         Liverpool Empire

June 5th         Blackpool Opera House

June 7th         Nottingham Royal Centre 

June 10th       Birmingham Symphony Hall

June 12th       Cardiff Millennium Centre

June 14th       Oxford New Theatre

June 15th       Ipswich Regent Theatre

June 17th       Portsmouth Guildhall

June 18th       Bristol Colston Hall

June 19th       Southampton Mayflower

June 21st       London Royal Albert Hall

June 22nd      London Royal Albert Hall 

June 24th       Plymouth Pavilions

June 25th       Bournemouth BIC

June 26th       Brighton Centre

 

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