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Our New Music For February!

Posted by: yetheart, February 4, 2016 7:15 pm
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David Bowie, Blackstar

Looking for new music? Look no further than your local Queens Library! Every month, our expert staff will bring you the best of what's new in our physical and digital collections.

Check out our music recommendations for February 2016!

David Bowie, Blackstar
As you have probably heard by now, David Bowie died of cancer last month and the entertainment world is still reeling. He leaves behind an unparalleled legacy of music and a final album, Blackstar. Although there will certainly be a slew of posthumous releases, this one is the record he wanted to be his farewell. It is fittingly a bit dark, strange but familiar, and altogether Bowie. You can hear it now on Freegal.

Babyface, Return of the Tender Lover
Babyface is a star in the R&B community with 26 #1 hits and 11 Grammy Awards. He is credited with helping to create the New Jack Swing movement of the 1980s and the list of stars he has worked with reads like a Hall of Fame. Return of the Tender Lover is his first solo album in 10 years and refers to his 1989 triple-platinum album Tender Lover. He labels his new material as “unapologetic R&B” where the singer shows love, not lust, for the women he admires. Watch the video for the lead track “We’ve Got Love.”

Hank Williams, Jr., It’s About Time
Hank Williams, Jr., aka Bocephus, is considered to be a living legend in the world of country music. The Nashville establishment thought he was crazy when he strayed from his father’s traditional sound for something a bit more contemporary and rocking. The gamble paid off and his legions of fans make sure that every concert sells out and every record goes platinum. His latest CD has a few guest stars but it is still The Hank Show. Watch his video for “Are You Ready for the Country” featuring Eric Church.

Eric Marienthal & Chuck Loeb, Bridges
With Eric Marienthal on saxophone and Chuck Loeb on guitar, you can be sure of hearing some languid but groove-oriented contemporary jazz. Bridges is the follow-up to their previous collaboration It’s Love. The music they make together is a genre-bending mix of New Age, fusion, and funk. Their small group of back-up musicians doesn’t take away from the focus of the interplay between sax and guitar. Listen to the lead track “Crossing."

Tony Bennett & Bill Charlap, The Silver Lining
Fresh from his collaboration with Lady Gaga, Tony Bennett teams up with pianist Bill Charlap to present a selection of Jerome Kern songs. At 89 years old, Mr. Bennett can be forgiven for getting back to a more mellow interpretation of the standards. However, the combination of his voice with Charlap’s intimate piano styling makes us remember why we’ve been Bennett fans for as long as we can remember. He’s a class act all the way.  You can hear the whole album on Freegal.

G-Eazy, When It’s Dark OutG-Eazy, When It’s Dark Out
Oakland rapper, songwriter, and producer G-Eazy (formerly Young Gerald) didn’t waste much time bringing us his follow-up to the hit CD These Things Happen. Trying to appeal to a bigger audience, his new CD When It’s Dark Out features tracks in a crossover R&B style which divided the reviewers. Some thought it was a great way to showcase his talents; others thought it was a gimmick. Judge for yourself by listening to the whole album on Freegal.

John Pizzarelli, Midnight McCartney
Jazz guitarist/vocalist John Pizzarelli takes on Paul McCartney in this wonderful tribute album. To be clear, there are no Beatles songs covered here, only selections from the Wings catalog and McCartney’s solo career. As the title Midnight McCartney suggests, the interpretations are suitable for late night jazz clubs where things might get a bit hot and sultry. Mr. Pizzarelli’s extended family gets in on the act, providing some vocals and musical back-up. Check out his live rendition of “Maybe I’m Amazed."

Young Empires, The Gates
Young Empires is a Canadian rock band specializing in indie and baroque pop. Often compared with The Killers and Arcade Fire, Young Empires uses electro and worldbeat rhythms to offset their layered synth and guitar lines. They are also noted for their sense of fashion. They’ve been big stars up North since 2009, and maybe now is the time for the big American breakthrough. Watch the video for the title track.

Bryan Adams, Get Up
Canadian rocker Bryan Adams hasn’t been much in the spotlight since his heyday in the 1980s with his multiplatinum album Reckless. That doesn’t mean he’s been idle. He gave up his MTV image to concentrate more on writing songs for stage and screen and has won 5 Golden Globes and been nominated for 3 Academy Awards. He also keeps releasing rock records at his own pace. His 13th studio album is a solid effort with catchy songs. It is a shame hardly anyone noticed. Watch the video for his rockabilly-flavored song “You Belong to Me.”

Tamar Braxton, Calling All Lovers
Tamar is the youngest of the five sisters who formed the R&B group the Braxtons in 1989. The group broke up soon after but just about all of the members went on to solo careers in music, most famously Toni Braxton. It wasn’t until 2013 that Tamar’s musical career really got attention. Her stints on various reality TV shows and Fox’s talk show The Real certainly helped to boost her image, but the music is no hype. Though she plays around with various styles, her overall talent is undeniable. Listen to the entire Calling All Lovers album on Freegal.


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