Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Music Column – 1996 – A year of change and Celine Dion.


Welcome to 1996 and huge year of change for both of us as a couple and as a family. My father’s health continued to deteriorate but he was determined to make his 80th birthday on January 12th and we celebrated with a lunch at the Queen’s Hotel in Southsea. I had come to the end of my contract in Peterborough and Norwich and was able to pop down from London three times a week to Portsmouth to help out along with my sister and her husband.

Sadly on April 5th which was Good Friday that year, my father died in hospital after a very brave fight, and even the week before he was convinced that he was going to beat this thing!

David was head hunted for a job in Brussels and we decided to put the house in South Woodford on the market rather than let it. It was sad to leave the house, as we had enjoyed nine years there, making lots of friends both locally and through our respective jobs. But we both felt that a new adventure would be good for us and it would prove to be just that.

As I mentioned in the last post my weight had blossomed! I was now in the process of losing that weight and was down a stone (only 10 stone to go). David had heard that Anthony Robbins the American motivational speaker was coming to Birmingham and had signed us up for his Fire Walk Weekend.

I had no idea what to expect and to be honest when we had attended this motivational event I was very fat and self-conscious. However, we met some very interesting people, many who were also looking for a kick up the backside and it would be the start of me getting back control of my body and willpower. David actually walked across 25 foot of burning coals but I was far too heavy to attempt it!

Over the next two years we attended Tony Robbins Life Mastery series in America, Hawaii and the Caribbean and it certainly helped keep me motivated as I lost the rest of the ten stone in weight.

David went ahead of me to Brussels and we eventually found a very nice house in Rhodes -Saint- Genese which was very close to the town of Waterloo and the battleground. We would spend 18 months there and were very happy exploring Brussels and the wonderful surrounding countryside.

I took the opportunity to continue my nutritional studies and I began the daily journal that would later become my first book Size Matters.

It was during this time in Brussels that we also made another emotional journey. My mother’s father had been killed on November 2nd, 1918 only nine days before peace was declared when she was just over a year old. My sister researched his whereabouts through the War Graves Commission and had discovered that he was buried in a small military cemetery close to the village of Poix du Nord just across the border into Northern France. She and her husband Robert had taken my mother to see her father’s grave a couple of years before our time in Belgium but both she and my mother came to stay with us in November 1996 so that we could lay a wreath on his grave on Remembrance Sunday.

To be honest there was little time for music in the first few months of 1996 and when I look back at the charts there are many artists that I did not remember and who seem to have been one hit wonders. It was the start of Spice Girl fever and they had two hits in the charts with Wannabe and Say You’ll Be There, George Michael with Fast Love, Los Del Rio with Macarena (love dancing to that), Take That with How Deep Is Your Love, Michael Jackson and Earth Song, Boyzone and Words, Celine Dion and Because You Loved Me and It’s All Coming Back To Me Now, Dunblane and Knocking on Heaven’s Door and Gina G and Ooh Aah, Just a Little Bit.

Because my father was a huge fan of Celine Dion, here is It’s All Coming Back To Me Now courtesy of  CelineDionVEVO

You can buy Celine Dion music : Amazon

Thank you for tuning in today and hope you have enjoyed a little more about my story and the music.. thanks Sally

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Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Music Column with William Price King – Josh Groban – The Early Years.


Welcome to the new series and over the next few weeks we will be sharing the career and music of Josh Groban.

Today an introduction to this extremely talented singer, songwriter and actor, who has wowed audiences around the world with his distinctive baritone voice.   I will hand over to William now to take us through his early years.

Josh Groban was born in Los Angeles in 1981 into a musical family. His mother Lindy was a school teacher and his father Jack a businessman and also an accomplished pianist. One of his grandmothers began to teach piano to Josh at age three and his parents introduced him to a wide variety of musical styles from opera to pop. A trait echoed in his own music years later, Groban has said that he was drawn to musicians “who decided not to settle into one particular musical style.”

It was not long before Josh was performing on stage when his music teacher chose him to sing the George Gershwin song ‘S’wonderful’ from the Broadway hit ‘Funny Face’. At that time Josh was more focused on his acting and performed in his high school’s production of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’.

In 1997 and 1998 Josh attended the Interlochen Centre for the Arts summer camp in Michigan, majoring in music theater and taking vocal lessons.

Seth Riggs, Josh’s vocal coach, happened to be a friend of David Foster, a Grammy-winning producer, writer and arranger as well as Brian Avnet who was to become his manager and introduced them in 1998. This introduction led to Josh Groban acting as a rehearsal singer at some high-profile events including the 1999 Grammy Awards, where as a stand-in for Andrea Bocelli, he rehearsed David Foster’s ‘The Prayer’ with Celine Dion.  Although nervous at the prospect, Josh was so impressive that the host of the event Rosie O’Donnell, asked him to appear on her show the following week, leading to an appearance on ‘Ally McBeal’.

Josh majored in theater at The Los Angeles High School for the Arts and graduated in 1999. Following four months of the first semester at Carnegie Mellon University studying musical theater, Josh Groban left after being offered a recording contract, and the start of his meteoric singing career.

Creator David E. Kelley created character Malcolm Wyatt for Groban in the season finale of ‘Ally McBeal’ aired in May 2001. The character of Malcolm Wyatt was so popular, prompting 8,000 emails from viewers, that Groban was asked to return the next season to reprise his role and perform “To Where You Are.” Avnet claims this sequence of events effectively got Groban’s career off the ground

Some of the prestigious nominations for Josh Groban’s work.

Josh Groban has been nominated for four Grammy Awards. In 2005 for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance for ‘You Raise Me Up’. 2009 for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for ‘Noel’, which was also nominated for International Album of the Year in 2008 for the Juno Awards. 2016 Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for ‘Stages’ and again in 2017 for ‘Stages Live’

In 2017 Josh was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Performance of an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical in ‘Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812′

Josh Groban has released 7 Studio Albums, 4 Live Albums and 30 singles with over 30 million records sold worldwide. Josh Groban Discography

Here is how it all began….. Celine Dion shares how she first met Josh Groban and they then perform ‘The Prayer’.

Read the reviews and buy the music of Josh Groban US: https://www.amazon.com/Josh-Groban/e/B000APOD76

Read the reviews and buy the music of Josh Groban UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Josh-Groban/e/B000APOD76

Find out more about Josh Groban and tour information: http://www.joshgroban.com/

Other sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josh_Groban

About William Price King

William Price King is an American jazz singer, crooner, and composer.

His interest in music began at an early age when he studied piano and clarinet in high school. At Morehouse College in Atlanta where he grew up, he sang in the Glee Club and studied classical music. After graduation he went off to the Yale School of Music where he earned a Masters degree. From there he journeyed to New York where he created a jazz trio ‘Au Naturel’ which performed in some of the hottest venues in Manhattan including gigs on Broadway and the famous ‘Rainbow Room.’ These gigs opened doors for performances in Montreal and a European tour.

While touring Europe he met a lovely French lady, Jeanne Maïstre, who, a year later became his wife. King left the group ‘Au Naturel’ and settled in the south of France where he started a new life on the French Riviera, opening his own music school – the “Price King Ecole Internationale de Chant.” He has had the pleasure over the years of seeing many of his students excel as singers on a professional level, and some going on to become national celebrities. He continues to coach young singers today, in his spare time.

His debut jazz album was entitled “Home,” and was a collection of contemporary compositions he composed, with lyrics written by his wife Jeanne King. His second album was a Duo (Voice and Guitar) with Eric Sempé on the guitar. This album included original songs as well as well known standards from contemporary jazz and pop artists. The “King-Sempé” duo toured France and thrilled audiences for more than three years before going their separate ways. King has formed a new duo called “Clear Cut,” and is now exploring new ideas, in a smooth jazz/soul/folk direction.

In addition to singing and composing, King has been collaborating with author Sally Cronin over the past few years on her blog “Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life,” with the series “A Man And His Music – Jazz, Contemporary, Classical, and Legends” and now, the “William Price King Music Column.” Working with author Sally Cronin has been an exhilarating experience in many ways and has brought a new dimension to King’s creative life. King has also created a micro blog, “Improvisation,” which features and introduces mostly jazz artists from across the jazz spectrum who have made considerable contributions in the world of jazz; and also artwork from painters who have made their mark in the world of art. This micro blog can be found on Tumblr.

His vocal mentors are two of the greatest giants in jazz, Nat King Cole and Mel Tormé. King has a distinctive wide-ranging voice which displays a remarkable technical facility and emotional depth.

William Price King on Tumblr – IMPROVISATION https://williampriceking.tumblr.com

Connect with William

Websitehttp://www.williampriceking.com/
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/WilliamPriceKing
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/wpkofficial
Regular Venuehttp://cave-wilson.com/ 
ITunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/william-price-king/id788678484

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will tune in again next week for part two of the Josh Groban series.

You can find all of the Music Column series in this directory: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/william-price-king-music-column/

and all the previous posts on jazz, classical and contemporary artists here: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/william-price-king-a-man-and-his-music-jazz-contemporary-classical-and-legends/

William Price King meets some Legends – Barbra Streisand – The Finale


Thank you for joining us today and this will be the last post in this series and also for the summer as William Price King takes a well earned break for a few weeks.. He will be back in September with some other legends of music.

In February 2006, Streisand recorded the song “Smile” with Tony Bennett at Streisand’s home in Malibu. The song is included on Bennett’s 80th birthday album, “Duets.” They filmed a live performance of the song for a special entitled “Tony Bennett: An American Classic. The special aired on NBC November 21, 2006, and was released on DVD the same day. Streisand’s duet with Bennett opened the special.

“Smile” was originally the theme of an instrumental used in the soundtrack for the film “Modern Times” by Chaplin, in 1936. The music was composed by Chaplin and inspired by Puccini’s Tosca. John Turner and Geoffrey Parsons added the lyrics and the title in 1954. Nat King Cole recorded the first version with lyrics and the rest is history. Barbra Streisand and Tony Bennett do a fabulous cover of this great American classic. Enjoy.

Following the special with Tony Bennett, Barbra Streisand announced a tour which included the classical group Il Divo. She intended to raise both money and awareness for a number of charities that she supported. To date The Streisand Foundation has raised over 7 million in profits to these charities which still occupy much of her time and efforts. Streisand: The Tour, over the 20 concerts, set box-office records grossing over 92 million with profits distributed through the foundation.

In September 2014, she released “Partners,” a new album of duets that features collaborations with “Elvis Presley, Andrea Bocelli, Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie, Billy Joel, Michael Bublé, Josh Groban, John Legend and many others.

In “I Still Can See Your Face” Streisand’s tremendous vocal blend with Andrea Bocelli is outstanding and spine tingling. This duet is taken from the 2014 album “Partners,” with an all male lineup. “Partners” topped the Billboard 200 in the first week of its release, making Streisand the only recording artist to have a number-one album in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, 2000s, and 2010s. It was also certified gold in November 2014 and platinum in January 2015, thus becoming Streisand’s 52nd gold and 31st Platinum album, more than any other female artist in history.

This musical powerhouse has produced some incredible statistics. Apart from producing dozens of gold and platinum selling albums she is second in the all-time charts ahead of the iconic beatles and The Rolling Stones and only bettered by the King.. Elvis Presley.

Apart from selling around 250 million records worldwide, she is the only artist to have earned awards from all the major award institutions, including two Academy Awards, one Tony Award, five Emmys, 10 Grammys, 13 Golden Globes, a CableACE Award, the University of Georgia’s George Foster Peabody Award and the American Film Institutes’s Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2015, she was further honored as a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Streisand has been nominated 43 times for a Grammy Award, winning eight. In addition, she has received two special non-competitive awards; the 1992 Grammy Legend Award and the 1994 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. She has also been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame four times. In 2011, she was honored as MusiCares Persono of the Year by the Grammy Foundation for her artistic achievement in the music industry.

In a last performance for the series, a wonderful duet between Barbra Streisand and Celine Dion.

“Tell Him” was the first single from Dion’s “Let’s Talk About Love” and Streisand’s “Higher Ground” albums. This duet was rejected by non-adult contemporary radio stations. Sony Music Entertainment canceled the U.S. single release, because it did not have a broad enough support to put the song on top of the charts. The song did manage to peak at number five on the Adult Contemporary and number 58 on the Radio Songs charts. However, “Tell Him” was a huge hit outside the US and was, nonetheless, nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals in 1998.

Read all the reviews and buy Barbra Streisand’s music: https://www.amazon.com/Barbra-Streisand/e/B000AQ2ZRU

Additional information sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbra_Streisand

About William Price King

William Price King is an American jazz singer, musician and composer. Originally he studied classical music and opera but over the years his style has evolved to what many refer to as the ‘sweet point’ where music and voice come together so beautifully.

His vocal mentors are two of the greatest giants in jazz, Nat King Cole and Mel Torme. His jazz album, ‘Home,’ is a collection of contemporary songs and whilst clearly a homage to their wonderful legacy it brings a new and refreshing complexity to the vocals that is entrancing.

His latest album Eric Sempe and William Price King is now available to download. The repertory includes standards such as “Bye Bye Blackbird” (a jazz classic), Sting’s “Englishman in New York,” Queen’s “The Show Must Go On”, Led Zepplin’s “Stairway to Heaven” and other well-known jazz, pop, and rock classics.

William and Eric Sempe have also brought their own magic to the album with original tracks such as Keep on Dreaming and Red Snow with collaboration with Jeanne King
Download the new album. http://cdbaby.com/cd/williampriceking

William is currently in France where he performs in popular Jazz Venues in Nice and surrounding area.

Connect to William

Website – http://www.williampriceking.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/WilliamPriceKing
Twitter – @wpkofficial
Regular Venue – http://cave-wilson.com/
ITunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/william-price-king/id788678484

You can find all of William’s posts on Jazz, Classical and Contemporary artists in this link: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/william-price-king-a-man-and-his-music-jazz-classical-and-contemporary-legends/

Classical Music with William Price King – Andrea Bocelli up to date.


classical musicWelcome to the last post in the story so far of Andrea Bocelli.. It is clear from his recent performances that he is in his prime as far as his voice is concerned and I am sure there will be many more albums added to his astonishing number so far. He continues to grow his worldwide audience and today we also find out more about his foundation and charity work.

It is now time to hand over to William Price King to look at not just his stand out performances of the last six years but also what his fans have to say about his music.

book

In the late summer of 2011 Andrea Bocelli gave a free concert on the Great Lawn of Central Park in New York.  The concert was broadcast throughout north America by PBS and in Italy by Rai 1.  The concert included guest performers Celine Dion, Tony Bennett and Bryn Terfel and the album of the concert immediately entered the Billboard Top 10 rising to No. 4 on the Billboard 200.

Singing in New York City on Central Park’s Great Lawn is an honor for both pop and classical artists. Andrea Bocelli is enrapturing and provides an exquisite performance. Bocelli, being a pop singer who happens to sing opera, comes from a long line of Italian vocalists who enjoy singing both the classical and popular repertory and especially those glorious Neapolitan songs such as the jovial Funiculi, Funicula.

“Funiculì, Funiculà” is a famous Neapolitan song composed in 1880 by Luigi Denza to lyrics by Peppino Turco. It was written to commemorate the opening of the first funicular cable car on Mount Vesuvius. It was presented by Turco and Denza at the Piedigrotta festival the same year. The sheet music was published by Ricordi and sold over a million copies within a year. It has been widely adapted and recorded since its publication.

Here, his transcendent voice rings out, as he sings the high notes and lower register with ease, backed by the New York Philharmonic and Chorus, under the direction of musical director Alan Gilbert. A real treat!

In October, 2011 Bocelli performed again for Pope Benedic XVI and a crowd of 8,000 people in Vatican’s Audience Hall. He gave an open-air free concert at Praça Rui Barbosa in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, in November, to an audience of between 80,000 and 150,000 people.

Also in this busy year, The Andrea Bocelli Foundation was launched. Its two missions are to fund medical research and fight poverty.  Andrea is very actively involved in the foundation which is currently bringing aid to Haiti that was devastated by a hurricane on 4th October this year.  Whole villages were flooded and no longer exist. Homes and huge swathes of vegetation and farming land has been swept away. The bridge connecting the south of the island to the capital collapsed which resulted in a long delay for supplies to get through. The foundation is working to bring in essentials and repair infrastructure so that people can have shelter, food and water until repairs can be finalised.  This includes repairing the schools for the 1350 students.

http://www.andreabocellifoundation.org

He not only works to develop his own foundation but also has contributed his time and his talent throughout his career to support to causes around the world.

He has participated in charity benefit concerts in different countries for various charities, such as the Michael Jackson benefit concert in 1998, the Memorial Concert at Ground Zero, in New York City for the victims of the September 11 attacks, and the Music of Asia festival in 2004, for the Indian tsunami appeal.

He performed with Mary J. Blige and David Foster the the 52nd Grammy Awards to raise awareness for the victims of the 2010 Haiti earthquake. He later gave an open-air concert at Masada, Israel, with the proceeds going to the residents of Galilee and Negev, and another in Sicily to support the Flames of Solidarity charity, raising awareness concerning poverty. In Greece, he held a concert at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus to help cancer research. Bocelli performed at the Children in Need Rocks Manchester concert in November 2011.

The awards continued to pour in and in 2012 he received the  “America Award” from the Italy-USA Foundation. He also won “International Artist of the Year in association with Raymond Weil” of the Classic Brit Awards that year.  As a final honour he performed for Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Albert Hall, during the 100th anniversary of the Royal Variety Performance.

In January of 2013, Andrea Bocelli released his fourteenth studio Album, Passione. The album features Mediterranean love songs including duets with Jennifer Lopez, Nelly Furtado.
Passione is the fourteenth studio album by Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, released on 29 January 2013.[3] The album is a collection of Mediterranean love songs featuring duets with Jennifer Lopez, Nelly Furtado

“La Vie en rose” was the signature song of popular French singer Édith Piaf, written in 1945, popularized in 1946, and released as a single in 1947. The song became very popular in the USA in 1950 with no less than seven different versions reaching the Billboard charts.

This is a very interesting cabaret style virtual duet with the late Edith Piaf performed under the stars, accompanied by a very fine jazz orchestra singing her signature song “La Vie en Rose.” Bocelli’s French is flawless in this piece showcasing his versatile vocal abilities with a certain inflection in his singing that truly evokes the emotion of this beautiful and romantic love song.

Andrea Bocelli continues to perform around the world and to release recordings of those performances and studio albums. You can find details of all his music at this link:

BUY Andrea Bocelli’s Music: https://www.amazon.com/Andrea-Bocelli/e/B000APRADU

My life experience has taught me nothing happens by chance. Even the idea of the ball in a roulette game: it’s not chance it ends up in a certain place. It’s forces that are at play.”  Andrea Bocelli

Official Website: http://lnx.andreabocelli.org

Additional material https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrea_Bocelli

To end the series we have had a special request to play The Prayer featuring Celine Dion… thanks Debby Gies for the suggestion.

 

williampricekingAbout William Price King

William Price King is an American jazz singer, musician and composer. Originally he studied classical music and opera but over the years his style has evolved to what many refer to as the ‘sweet point’ where music and voice come together so beautifully.
His vocal mentors are two of the greatest giants in jazz, Nat King Cole and Mel Torme. His jazz album, ‘Home,’ is a collection of contemporary songs and whilst clearly a homage to their wonderful legacy it brings a new and refreshing complexity to the vocals that is entrancing.

His latest album Eric Sempe and William Price King is now available to download. The repertory includes standards such as “Bye Bye Blackbird” (a jazz classic), Sting’s “Englishman in New York,” Queen’s “The Show Must Go On”, Led Zepplin’s “Stairway to Heaven” and other well-known jazz, pop, and rock classics.

William and Eric Sempe have also brought their own magic to the album with original tracks such as Keep on Dreaming and Red Snow with collaboration with Jeanne King
Download the new album. http://cdbaby.com/cd/williampriceking

William is currently in France where he performs in popular Jazz Venues in Nice and surrounding area.

Connect to William

Links to website – http://www.williampriceking.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/WilliamPriceKing
Twitter – https://twitter.com/wpkofficial
Regular Venue – http://cave-wilson.com/
ITunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/william-price-king/id788678484

You will find the previous series on Luciano Pavarotti and part one of Andrea Bocelli in this directory:

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/classical-music-with-william-price-king/

Thank you so much for joining us today.. We would be grateful if you could reblog or share the post.. thanks Sally