Bobby Caldwell Perfect Island Nights (Sin-Drome)
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by Bobby Caldwell ~ Time & Again: The Anthology, Pt. 2 ~ $15.28
- Released: February 1, 2005
- Originally Released: 2005
- Label: Sin-Drome Records
Song previews provided courtesy of iTunes
Personnel: Bobby Caldwell (vocals, guitar, piano, electric piano, organ, keyboards, programming, background vocals); Bobby Caldwell (bass guitar); Tommy V. (guitar); Rory Mazzela (tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone); Christopher Mauer (flugelhorn); Mark McMillan (electric piano, keyboards, programming); Dave Connor, Richard McIntosh (programming); Jean McClain (background vocals); Deborah Avery (bass clarinet, tenor saxophone); Russ Capri (trumpet, flugelhorn); Tom Keene (electric piano, keyboards, programming); Christian Ebner, Christine Miller (background vocals).
Arrangers: Bobby Caldwell ; Richard McIntosh; Tom Keene; Mark McMillan; Dave Connor.
The veteran blue-eyed soul singer has been busy since 1995 (the year he released his last literal pop album, Soul Survivor), recording albums of standards along with his Frank Sinatra and Bobby Darin-styled soundtrack work and counting the royalties from the 100 or so covers or samples of his best-known hit, "What You Won't Do for Love" -- so preoccupied, in fact, that's it's been easy to forget just how skilled he is at delivering easygoing romantic pop, whether it's funky and percussive (as on the brassy, bouncy "Call Me Up"), perfect for Latin salsa dancing (the balmy "Donna"), or simply laid-back and moonlit (the title track). Caldwell is at the top of his charming game on this modern adult contemporary classic, not mining any truly original territory lyrically but wringing every last emotion out of his originals (the power ballads "Extra Mile" and "Crazy for Your Love" are standouts) and a handful of well-chosen covers. None of his classic pop choices come close to his renditions of "Beyond the Sea" or "Luck Be a Lady," but he finds all the passion necessary on a loping take of "Sukiyaki (Forever)" (he provides sweet new English lyrics), the bright samba arrangement of "Our Day Will Come," and the masterfully soulful "Where Is the Love," which finds him perfectly paired with Deniece Williams. The colorful back cover shows a contented Caldwell, arms crossed, in his trademark blue slouch hat, sound asleep. Maybe his long-awaited pop comeback exhausted him, but it will energize fans longing for his return to form. ~ Jonathan Widran
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