The Singer provides a splendid showcase for the clarity of Lesley's voice and is a delight to listen to, although the choice of material may surprise some of Lesley's fans. The album has a very distinct English feel, with some Celtic influences apparent, and is strongly influenced by the traditions of English folk music. The influence of Tolga Kashif on the album through his arrangements of well-known songs is also apparent. The selection of songs is wide-ranging, reflecting an eclectic taste, but provides an enchanting collection. These range from the mysticism of William Blake's Jerusalem to Sting's Fields of Gold. Both Scarborough Fare and the arrangement of Abide With Me display allude to the Yorkshire upbringing while the inclusion of both familiar (Greensleves) and unfamiliar (O Waly, Waly) folk songs reinforce the Englishness of the selections. While its has strong folk music influences, the folk music purist will doubtless object to the orchestrations, although I feel that these enhance the songs. The Singer is a delight to listen to and may encourage a new range of listeners.
Having watched the BBC Special of "The Singer" I can only say I was entranced. I am not a great opera lover and have always felt that Garrett's talents lay elsewhere, witness her success with popular musical items. "The Singer" is a marriage made in heaven. Beautiful, traditional, music, beautifully sung; what more could one ask? The CD captures the mood superbly, and is a joy to listen to. It is not difficult to recall the stunning visual images which accompanied the music - what a pity the BBC did not see fit to issue a video of the whole programme. Garrett's voice is perfectly suited to this kind of musical arrangement and I sincerely hope this will be only the first of such recordings. I would have no hesitation in recommending this recording to anyone.
Lesley's latest album provides a fascinating counterpoint to her earlier, mostly classically-based, recordings. It provides a splendid showcase for the clarity of her voice and weaves an interesting balance between traditional English & Celtic folksongs, and their modern variants, augmented by distinctive versions of the Beatles' Let it Be and Sting's Field of Gold The choice of songs spans from these modern songs, the mysticism of William Blake's Jerusalem and the traditional, very apt for a Yorkshire singer, Scarborough Fair. The album should appeal to many of those who like folk music, albeit with singing of a higher quality than many proponents of that genre achieve.
If I was told that I had to leave my house now and I could only keep one CD this would be it! I am a huge fan of Lesley Garrett and have all her albums but this is, for me, by far the best. I love the songs that are on the CD - some easily recognisable and others old traditionals - giving the whole album a wonderful atmospheric feel. It takes you on a wonderful journey from quiet contemplative tracks to, my personal favourite, the rousing Jerusalem. To accompany this CD there is also a DVD available which is also amazing. With Lesley's voice and Tolga Kashifs arrangements (which always show off a song to it's best) this is a truly exceptional album. 12 out of 10!!!!
Lesley Garrett once again at her very best. This album has music for all tastes from an excellent "Pavame" to a very individual version of "Fields of Gold". "Jerusalem" will raise the hairs on the back of your neck. It take some confidence to record a Lennon/ McCartney song and do it justice, LG does this with her usual flair and style making "Let it Be" her own once again. From easy listening to sing along to, perfect. An album for yourself and one to give as a present, it will be appreciated.