Ok, so the title line was a bit obvious but I wanted to be the first to milk it!
I have never bought a John Barrowman album before, loving him only as an actor and TV presenter but after hearing "what about us?" I was hooked and bought this album on the day of release and I am so happy I did.
It is certainly an eclectic mix, you wouldn't necessarily have Uptown Girl and Angel on the same CD but I guess you shoudn't expect anything else from Mr B.
I'll only touch on a few of the songs in the review
The first song "What About Us?" written by Gary Barlow is incredible. It is powerful , emotive and yet remaining quite masculine for a song about love life insecurities.
"Angel" by Sarah McLachlan. Now this one is going to divide people I think. Even I was a bit wary the first time hearing it, but personally I love it. Yes it is slightly different to Sarah's haunting version, but it is still full of emotion and heart.
"I know him so well" A duet with Daniel Boys (from the TV show "Any Dream Will Do"). Well, Elaine and Barbara must be ecstatic with this one! Two gay singers changing the whole dynamic of the original song is just breathtaking. There is a key change towards the end that would knock Westlife off their stools thank you very much Daniel! Their voices compliment each other very well, and what a refreshing spin on a classic.
My slight criticism of this album would be that at times his song choices are a little predictable; I'd be surprised if there is a song on here that you don't know or can't hum along too, but is that necessarily a bad thing? It certainly didn't stop me buying the album...
All in all, I'm loving this album and I hope you do as well
on 26 November 2008
Not one song on this album makes me cringe. It's beautifully put together, all the songs are beautifully sung with fantastic musical arrangements. Favourite songs include, 'What about us?', 'You'll think of me', 'I made it through the rain' and 'Angel' which surprised me by being better than the original Sarah McLachlan version (And I am a die-hard fan of Sarah).
The duet with Daniel Boys on 'I know him so well' is so amazing with brilliant vocals from both men. All round a brilliant album which I found to be much better than 'Another Side'
on 10 December 2008
What a great CD! John Barrowman's beautiful voice is showcased well with a diverse assortment of songs, including pop, country and musical theatre.
I particularly love "What About Us", which is an original Gary Barlow song written for this CD. John's "Both Sides Now" is now my favorite version of that song, and I've loved "Both Sides Now" for more years than I'll admit to. "From A Distance" and "Angel" are also favorites, and I even enjoyed "You'll Think of Me" despite not being a fan of country. "I Am What I Am" has become John Barrowman's signature song over the last few years, and he gives one of his best performances of it on this CD. I could keep going on, but the fact is there really are no bad tracks here. As wonderful as the rest of the CD is, though, my favorite track is the duet "I Know Him So Well", which is sung with Daniel Boys. What utterly gorgeous harmony! This song is truly sublime and I can't get enough of it.
John Barrowman's "Music, Music, Music" is definitely Fantastic, Fantastic, Fantastic!
on 18 July 2016
I first remember coming across John Barrowman in the terrible West End musical 'Matador' in 1991, I worked in the theatre back then and probably saw him in other shows as he was also in 'Miss Saigon' & 'Anything Goes', and I saw them too! But years later he turned up as a TV presenter and started making albums, and he does a very good job on 'Music, Music. Music', probably the strongest album he's made to date.
Even though Gary Barlow's 'What about us' was the first single, it was a cover of Barry Manilow's 'I made it through the rain' that became the album's biggest hit. This is purely a covers album, but a good one at that. The choice of songs is generally good although I could have done without 'Uptown Girl', it really doesn't work for a gay man! And here we have the dilemma, why sing 'I know him so well' as a gay man then sing the rest of the songs as a straight man. The album highlight is definately the solo version of 'I know him so well', it's powerful and emotional, and it's about time gay male singers can sing 'he' instead of 'she'. The duet version really doesn't work as well though. It seams at times Mr Barrowman is walking a fine line between gay and straight. We get the gay anthem 'I am what i am' then we get 'Updown girl'. Stick to singing songs like 'Can't take my eyes off you' and using the masculine pro-noun, it works better for me.
on 10 December 2008
The latest offering from John Barrowman is fantastic - just the right mix of different music genres to create a hugely pleasurable listening experience. As with his last CD, there are a total of thirteen tracks, and each one is equally enjoyable to listen to.
Some of the top choices, though, would have to be his new single, "What About Us". This song was penned by Gary Barlow and offered to John Barrowman to record when the artist it was intended for apparently declined. It was originally believed that Barlow had written it specifically for John, but later reports have since corrected that unfortunate misconception. Nevertheless, it's a true pleasure to listen to him sing an original song.
Other particularly noteworthy songs are "Right Here Waiting For You", "From A Distance", "Uptown Girls" and the duet version of "I Know Him So Well". The latter song is also on the CD as a solo version, and is great to listen to, but it can't match the beautiful vocal harmonies that Barrowman produces alongside the talented Daniel Boys. It is the first time this song has been sung by a male duet, and they do the job superbly.
The track "From A Distance" is by far my favourite. I admit to being biased, because I'm more partial to ballads, but John sings this track magnificently.
On the whole, the CD is well worth every cent. John Barrowman has never failed to please with his musical offerings but, in my humble opinion, this is certainly his best compilation to date.
on 10 December 2008
John Barrowman's Music, Music, Music is his follow up to last years Another Side. Barrowman has said that the title is a homage to his catch phrase of fantastic, fantastic, fantastic which he uses often on tv talent shows he judges. The title is also indicative of the three types of songs on his album. Country (the Keith Urban song You'll think of me and Sarah McLachlan's Angel), Pop (Billy Joel's Uptown Girl, From a Distance and the Gary Barlow track written for this album What about us?)and Show tunes (I know him so well (from Chess, done as duet with Daniel Boys) and I am what I am (from La Cage Aux Folles). The duet from Chess which is usually song by two women is one of the outstanding tracks. Barrowman and Boys reach the emotional heart of this song and give it a new color. Also outstanding are I am what I am and What about us? I am what I am is a great choice for the very gay and very masculine Barrowman. There is nothing camp about this performance. This is a gay anthem for the 21st century. Music, music music would be a great gift for the music lover in your life.
on 27 November 2008
John Barrowman's rise to fame has been meteoric, and it is not too hard to see why. The performer's addictive and charasmatic personality shines through in everything that he does, and his latest album is no exception.
Some would categorise it as an "easy listening" album, appealing to an older audience, but make no mistke; this is by no means a lightweight release.
The title track "What About Us?" is a relentlessly catchy song, delivered expertly with by Barrowmans clear, silky vocals. Gary Barlow's arrangement is equally stunning, framing a remarkably restrained and powerful track. A refreshing return to "proper pop" without the un-necessary "Powty X Factor Contestant - trying too hard - warbling" style vocals which seems so prevalent these days.
Could the track be a teasing glimpse at what Barrowman has in store for the future? If so there is no doubting that he will become a succesful pop star as well as an established stage and TV performer.
The rest of the album is packed full of predictably "easy going" songs, but that's really no bad thing, for John handles them all perfectly; It is a selection which has something for everyone, with enough of John's individuality stamped on them to stand out from alternative offerings by similar artists.
Barrowman's voice has been likened as a cross between a young Cliff Richard and Michael Buble. Each song however showcases his ability to tackle different genres of music easily and skillfully. You will find no warbling, silly overly dramatic or complex singing here. Instead you will good old fashioned "feel good" music on the album, which will warm and satisfy anyone who buys it.
on 10 December 2008
Just about every song on here is pure bliss. Just about every song because there is a clunker. I'll get to that in a minute.
The only non-show tune/cover song,the Gary Barlow(Take That)penned "What About Us?" is a pure pop pleaser.
The CD does hit one sour note,his rendition of "Uptown Girl" with Daniel Boys,Ben Ellis & Keith Jack. Now matter how many versions of this song i hear,i still cringe. A shame,since they sound like they so much fun doing it. Next time JB wants to do a Billy Joel tune with these guys,let's hope he goes "The Longest Time".
Boys joins JB for a gorgeous,gender reversed(two men instead of two women singing the exact same lyrics)version of "I Know Him So Well" from the musical "Chess". Not too keen on JB's solo version,however.
In all,a near perfect album from a perfect performer and an awesome xmas gift for a loved one.
on 17 December 2008
The eclectic mix of musical genres that Barrowman selected for this CD transcends generation, culture, and gender. "Can't Take My Eyes Off of You," "Both Sides Now," and "Uptown Girl" take me back to my distant youth, and Gary Barlow's contribution of "What About Us?" brings me into the sometimes equally distant musical present. My favorite track has to be the hauntingly beautiful and poignant duet version of "I Know Him So Well." Love, loss, and heartbreak feel the same regardless of gender orientation, and I applaud Sony for their inclusion of a same-sex rendition of this classic. I basically love every track on the CD. I've only owned it for a few days, but everyone with whom I have shared it is ordering his/her own copy. Bravo, John! May you go platinum with this one!
on 24 November 2008
Ok im not exactly a non-biased judge as i LOVE John Barrowman, but this is a fantastic new album from him, including the wonderful version of I know him so well with Danny Boys (as seen on TV "Live at the Faenol Festival" last week!). Its also got his excellent single "what about us", -showing he can do songs OTHER than showtunes, and a host of well known favourites. Its perfect for xmas, -everyone can sing along!
I hate Uptown Girl with a passion, so even if he sung it in the nude i wouldnt listen to it, but apart from that a triumph all round!