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So? Lenny Henry Played Othello Didn't He?,
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This review is from: Gipsy Lady (Audio CD)
Gary Barden and Michael Voss reworking Michael Schenker's "Thank You 4" is, admittedly, a little like the idea of Lenny Henry playing Othello, or William Shatner playing Henry V (both of which actually happened). But so what? Both Henry and Shatner remain indispensable. In an analogous way, Barden and Voss completely transform Thank You 4 into something else - but the result is just as enjoyable, even if it is 'pop' rather than 'classic rock'.
The relationship between Gipsy Lady tracks and Thank You 4 tracks is as follows: Lost (TY4-1), Dance Lady Gipsy (TY4-8), All of My Life (TY4-11), Fight for Freedom (TY4-10), El Grande (TY4-5), Starting Over (TY4-4), Can't Live On Love Alone (TY4-13), Another Melody (TY4-7), Travelled So Far (TY4-3), Hungry (TY4-6), Night of the Stare (TY4-14), The Journey (TY4-12). Only TY4-2 and TY4-9 are omitted.
It would be misleading to think that vocals and other parts have simply been 'added' to TY4 tracks however. In some cases, the original TY4 tracks are actually hard to identify, such is the level of reworking. What Gipsy Lady achieves over and above TY4 is an injection of more obvious variety. It is not that the TY4 material is lacking in quality. Indeed, when making compilations of Schenker's music, slotting in his acoustic numbers here and there between electric tracks both isolates and highlights the greatness of virtually all of Schenker's acoustic compositions in their own right. This very point, though, means that when too many of Michael's straight acoustic tracks are placed in succession, one is left wanting injections of his electric material for the sake of diversity. What Gipsy Lady achieves is a similar kind of needed diversity - not by injecting electric material between acoustic tracks, but by creating a succession of very catchy pop-songs. Admittedly, Barden is not above lyrical "ham" at times - but it is the essential kind of ham we're talking about - the William Shatner kind without which the world - even the Shakespearean world - would be lacking something!