Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Music Column with William Price King – Josh Groban – Part Two

Welcome to the new series and over the next few weeks William Price King will be sharing the career and music of Josh Groban.  You can find Part One:Here

Josh Groban is an extremely talented singer, songwriter and actor, who has wowed audiences around the world with his distinctive baritone voice.

He 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

A Collection

Josh Groban was offered a recording contract at Warner Bros. Records through Foster’s 143 Records imprint. Avnet told HitQuarters that Warner initially proved resistant to the deal because “They were afraid they wouldn’t be able to get a voice like that on radio.”

Explaining his reasons for signing the artist, Foster said: “I love his natural ability in the pop and rock arena, but I love his sense of classics even more. He’s a true musical force to be reckoned with.” Under Foster’s influence, Groban’s first album focused more on classics such as “Gira Con Me Questa Notte” and “Alla Luce Del Sole.”

“Gira con Me” is a slow ballad that sounds like it may have come from a minor opera, but in fact was composed by David Foster and songwriter/producer Walter Afanasieff (best-known for his work with Mariah Carey). For this piece Foster composed music that sounds classical to the ears of non-classical fans, with lyrics in Italian to complete the effect. This song is from the 2001 album “Josh Groban.”

Groban performed “There For Me” with Sarah Brightman on her 2000–01 “La Luna World Tour,” and was featured on her “La Luna” concert DVD.

“For Always” is a theme song from the 2001 movie “A.I.: Artificial Intelligence,” that Josh Groban performed with Belgian-Canadian singer Lara Fabian. The song’s music was written by John Williams with lyrics by Cynthia Weil, produced and arranged by David Foster. The soundtrack was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Score, the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score, and a Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media. “For Always” is also featured on the “Josh Groban in Concert” album (2002).

“You’re Still You,” adapted from “Malèna” and written by Ennio Morricone and Linda Thompson-Jenner is from the first studio album Groban recorded. It charted at #10 on the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart. “Malèna” is a 2000 Italian romantic drama film starring Monica Bellucci and Giuseppe Sulfaro.

What makes this song really special is that it was sung by Groban when he stunned the world with his performance on “Ally McBeal,” a sitcom that ran on Fox from 1997-2002. This was a very spectacular musical debut, similar to that of Susan Boyle’s from Britain’s Got Talent. After the then unknown Groban sang “You’re Still You” on the season finale of “Ally McBeal,” the show was swamped with as many as 10,000 e-mails, many from people who wanted to know if the voice they heard was really his or if was dubbed. Well, it was certainly Groban’s voice. The rest is history. Uploaded by Josh Groban

In November 2001, his self-titled debut album was released, and rapidly the buying public responded to his talent and the album went double platinum. Josh Groban was in demand in the US and signed up for his own PBS special, but he also performed at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Norway, and performed with Charlotte Church at the closing ceremony of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics.

“To Where You Are,” also from the album “Josh Groban,” was written by Richard Marx and Linda Thompson, and produced by Marx. When released as a single in 2002, the song “bubbled under” the Billboard Hot 100 chart, peaking at #116 in September of that year. It was more successful on the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart, where it entered the chart in April 2002 and eventually spent two weeks atop the listing in August. It remained on this chart for 36 weeks. In November 2008, the song spent a week on the UK Singles Chart at #94. The song appears on his first two live albums, “Josh Groban in Concert” and “Live at the Greek,” as well as on his 2008 greatest hits release, “A Collection.”

Buy the music of Josh Groban : Amazon US – And: Amazon UK
Find out more about Josh Groban and tour information: Josh Groban Official Site
Other sources: Wikipedia

Join us next time for part two and more music from Josh Groban..

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 with French/Greek guitarist Manolis, 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 William Price King on Tumblr

Buy William’s music ITunes William Price King iTunes

Connect with William

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Regular VenueCave Wilson

My thanks to William for the amazing artists he has brought to the blog and thank you for dropping in today.  As always your feedback is very welcome.