On This Day

All posts tagged On This Day

…in Korean!  This was his one off appearance in Seoul, Korea and he sang a varied programme of classical, opera and musical theatre – and one song in Korean.  I understand the song is traditional but I have no idea what they are singing about!  The audience, soprano and conductor all seem very impressed though and his pronunciation seems, to my untutored ear) in time with the soprano:

The second song is one of my favourites from Alfie’s operatic repertoire, Brindisi from La Traviata.  Alfie looks as if he is enjoying this rare venture into operatic waters although I think he may have wanted to dance at one point and the dress had other ideas!

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The Thrill Is Gone at the Birchmere, Alexandria:

Alfie is clearly having the time of his life here but, as far as I’m aware, this is one song that he hasn’t performed in any tour since.  Bring it back Alfie, it’s great!

Written in 1951 by Roy Hawkins and Rick Darnell, the version most well known is that by BB King:

As mentioned in On This Day 31 January, Alfie was experimenting with blues at the time and The Thrill is Gone fits right in with that.  Perhaps that sound for Alfie was of it’s time  but I really hope we see it return in the not too distant future – I could listen to Alfie sing Trust and Storyteller all day long.

As mentioned, the original was by Roy Hawkins and this is it – still blues but more measured, at least to me:

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...Wayfaring Stranger in New Jersey:

First heard on the Autumn 2012 US tour, Wayfaring Stranger featured on Alfie’s 2012 album Storyteller and became a set list staple of the eponymous tour.  The song went on to feature in the first two Best Ever Alfie Boe Song polls in 2014 and 2015 and signalled a clear progression towards the style of Alfie’s next album, Trust.  Here is Alfie talking about why the song was chosen:

The joy Alfie talks about here was much more in evidence on the Storyteller tour – this is the song from the Royal Albert Hall (thanks to Linda W):

The strong backing vocals from Seweuse and Lucy are the icing on the cake for me, not to mention Murray, Matt and Nick on guitar and bass and Richard on keyboard.  I defy to stay sitting in your seat and not dance around when listening to this!

Storyteller is available here:

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O Sole Mio / Now or Never in Swindon on the Bring Him Home tour:

Seems a long time ago now doesn’t it?  Of course it is now five years since we saw Alfie do so many solo tour dates.  It’s been a while since I’ve sat and watched this combination of O Sole Mio and Now or Never and I’d forgotten how effective it was.  Lots of you haven’t though as it featured in the top ten of last year’s Best Alfie Boe Live Song.

O Sole Mio was written in 1898 and has been recorded and performed by huge numbers of people, making it one of the most famous Neapolitan songs around.  Alfie himself sang it on his 2007 album La Passione although that hasn’t stopped him having to explain that it’s not about ice cream to UK audiences.  For those of you outside our sunny shores, the tune of O Sole Mio was the theme of Cornetto ice cream TV adverts for a ten year period in the 1970’s and 1980’s.  It’s certainly where I remember it from originally.

La Passione is available here:

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…at the London Boat Show (thanks to Linda W for sharing):

This was the first outing for Elvis’s If I Can Dream which would go on to be a crowd pleasing staple of the forthcoming Storyteller tour in March and April that year.  For me, it was the second time I had seen Alfie sing live, albeit in a place I had never envisaged – perhaps the first of the new places I’ve been to following Alfie!

The song was written for Elvis for the 1968 TV Special that relaunched Elvis’s career and was a considerable departure in style.  Now, it seems that the song is just part of what is sometimes referred to as Vegas Elvis but at the time, the gospel sound was completely new to Elvis. It’s one of my favourite songs from the later part of Elvis’s career and Alfie’s interpretation was even better!

Two fabulous singers with such different voices and approaches to music but the same spine tingling result.

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…at Classic FM Live (thanks Marcia for sharing):

As befits a radio station, this performance at the Royal Albert Hall was never broadcast for TV so we only have sound…but what sound!

Addio Sogni Di Gloria was chosen as your favourite Alfie Boe song in 2015 (not even making the top ten this time around) and the second song, Chitarra Romana was also from the album Alfie was promoting at that time, Serenata.

Serenata is available here, if you don’t yet have it:

serenata

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I Wanna Know What Love Is at the Sunflower Jam:

Thanks as ever to Linda W for sharing (listen at the beginning and you can hear a few shouts of “Go on Alfie” from Linda).

Sunflower Jam was a concert at the Royal Albert Hall to raise money for a charity of the same name, raising funds for and awareness of an integrated approach to cancer treatments.  Featuring an enviable line up including Brian May, Alice Cooper, Kerry Ellis, Ian Paice, Steve Balsamo and Rick Wakeman, the concert also featured a few musicians who went on to tour with Alfie on the Storyteller tour.

On the concert DVD you can see Nick Fyffe, MD for Storyteller, backing singer Seweuse and one other who went onto become MD for the Serenata tour in 2014.  I have one copy of the DVD available to anyone who can tell me the name of this curly haired guitarist – all you have to do is pop the answer in the form below* and a winner will be picked a week today.

Good luck!

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*entrants must be subscribed to this blog – open to UK residents only

The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore at Joe’s Pub, NYC:

Now there are many songs I could have chosen from this concert (the whole thing is available on YouTube) but I chose this one as it is the one and only song that my son has on his playlist…and you know he’s had a LOT of exposure to Alfie’s songs!

This is from Storyteller and here is Alfie to tell us about the story behind the song:

Storyteller is available here:

storytellercd

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…Jimi Hendrix’s Angel at Carfest North (thanks to Jayne for sharing):

This was one of my favourite songs from the Storyteller tour earlier that year, even though I had never come across it before.  Yet another example of Alfie introducing me to new genres of music.  Angel was written and recorded by Hendrix in the mid sixties but not recorded with a view to release until The Cry of Love was released posthumously in 1971.

For those of us who attended those Carfest gigs, it was fabulous and so refreshing to see Alfie in his rocking out element, holding the festival audience in the palm of his hand.  Hoping we get to see that side of Alfie again in the future.

Angel is available as a bonus track on the US version of Storyteller:

Storyteller US version

Just as awesome as the original, available here on The Cry of Love:

Jimi Hendrix cry of love

Fabulous additions to your Summer Playlist!

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… his new, original song, Against the Tide, at the final date of his mini summer tour, Leeds Millennium Square:

Prior to writing this, I hadn’t listened to the song for a while and yet again, I’m reminded how much I love it.   Judging by the way he has the audience singing away by the end, I’m not alone in this opinion. Wouldn’t it be great if he recorded it one day, although with the next album being the Michael Ball collaboration, I fear we won’t hear a recorded version just yet.  By the way, even if you’re not a fan of this particular song, I’m confident there’s plenty in the video to keep everyone happy.

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