ALBUM : THE MEN I LOVE
ARTIST : AMII STEWART
GENRE : JAZZ VOCAL
DATE RELEASED : 2016
This album is probably a tribute album on all of her favorite male singer. And the songs that she included in here are of course the most popular songs if not her best favorite from their catalogue of hits and songs. Here is track by track review of this album.
- Boogie Down – originally performed by Al Jarreau and she delivered the song as is and she wasn’t wanting of course even in the scatting portion, you can say that she can proudly say that she is the male version of Al Jarreau based on this song alone.
Listen to her version of “Boogie Down’ here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sqbto1WgUwA
- Every Breath You Take – the most iconic song from The Police and unfortunately she chose to have her version more like her instead of doing a cover version. In fact, the musical arrangement of this song sounded like an original song of hers.
Listen to her unique take of “Every Breath You Take” here
- Fire and Rain – one of most mellow songs from James Taylor and with her version, you would be impressed that this song can be turned into a diva song.
Listen to her different take on “Fire and Rain” here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VqpY1SmvzFo
- I Just Wanna Stop – a Gino Vanelli song but this song has been performed before by a female jazz vocalist before through Angela Boffill. So, there is a bit of comparison in here and Stewart’s version is just at par with Ms. Boffil. With that, you can say that this song is indeed a song for female singers because both ladies has more passionate performance compared with Vanilli’s performance.
Listen to “I Just Wanna Stop” here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oTzGB7TjxAg
- Me and Mr Jones – usually this song is performed by male singers but she is female thus the change in title from Mrs. to Mr., and it tells about a relationship that was supposed to be wrong from the beginning. The problem with her version is that you could not feel the pain that when she sang in the part where she and Mr. Jones were to separate.
- Overjoyed – a Stevie Wonder hit and she chose to deliver the same musical arrangement from the original; there is even water rippling sounds like that of Wonder’s version. Because, she chose not to deviate from the original, there is a tendency for listeners to hear mentally Stevie Wonder’s voice.
Listen to her version of “Overjoyed” here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4cQ7AOVcA5Y
- Princess Dream – was a soundtrack from The Maharaja’s Daughter. Like any other soundtrack, there is a tendency that a particular theme song sounded like a track from another movie. In this case, you can say that this song sounds like the theme song form Disney movie “Mulan” titled “Reflection.”
Listen to “Princess Dream” here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmBFof6tiTk
- Sailing – originally performed by Christopher Cross. This track is a good example of the cover version being better than the original version. Perhaps, it is due to the relax manner Amii Stewart performed the song as opposed to Chris Cross version that you can feel the strain on his voice reaching the “headtone” notes.
- September Morning – it is not often that you hear female singers cover this Neil Diamond hit. Probably because, Neil’s performance can be difficult to top and it Ms. Stewart just showed that you cannot top the original but just merely deliver a competent version. This version lacks the longing that Mr. Diamond had each time he sang this song before.
Watch live performance of “September Morn” here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_kGzGQ_urU
- The Long and Winding Road – her version is another “divaesque”turn for this song.
How about taking time to listen to her not so Beatlesque version here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MII8AoK29zc
- Turn Your Love Around – like “Boogie Down,” this track just showed that Amii Stewart is more effective doing bouncy tunes. Perhaps, it is the disco diva in here that makes her effective singing upbeat songs
- Your Song – she was quite less successful with this song making it as her own. It is a good thing that she did some little deviation from the original version just to show that she can somehow transformed a song that is quite difficult to own.
As a whole, the album is satisfactory. This is the kind of record that you would want to listen if you are quite tired of listening to the original version. With that I rate this record 3.0 stars.
1 stars = Ignore it
2 stars = risk it
3 stars = borrow or buy it
4 stars = buy it and keep it
5 stars = buy, keep, and treasure it