Ringmaster General CD (2012)

Artist: Dave Stewart

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Product Overview


Label Surfdog
SKU 235665877
UPC 640424999377
UPC 14 00640424999377
Format CD
Release Date 9/4/2012
Author Dave Stewart
Associated Artist/Work Chopra, Deepak
Associated Artist/Work Original Soundtrack
Technical Info
Engineer John McBride; Ned Douglas
Producer Dave Stewart; Michael Bradford
CatalogID 530471
Lable Name Weapons of Mass Entertainment
Released 09/04/2012
Original Release 2012
Number of Discs 1
SPARE Code n/a
Length 50m : 40s
Mono/Stereo Stereo
UPC 00640424999377
Musical Guests
Joss Stone
Diane Birch
Alison Krauss
Jessie Baylin
Album Notes and Credits
Personnel: Dave Stewart (vocals, guitar); Tom Bukovac (acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Dan Dugmore (lap steel guitar, pedal steel guitar, banjo); Ann Marie Calhoun (violin); Mike Rojas (accordion, Wurlitzer organ, keyboards); Bobby Keys (saxophone); Chad Cromwell (drums, percussion); Drea Rhenee, Judith Hill, Hillary Lindsay, Jed Hughes, Amy Keys, Wendy Moten, Kim Fleming, Sarah Buxton (background vocals).
Audio Mixer: John McBride .
Recording information: Blackbird Studios, Nashville, TN.
Photographers: Kristin Burns; Collin Stark; Frank Ockenfeld; Ian Skalski; Evan Pesses; Cristina Dunlap.
Dave Stewart is a gifted musical collaborator, but he has the ego of a major star, which means he insists on taking the spotlight whether it's a good idea or not. He's also ambitious and full of ideas, which is good when he's working with someone who can use a push in the right direction, but if Stewart has no one around to give him bearings, he has a tendency to bite off more than he can chew stylistically, which is how he can go from the sublime pop perfection of his work in the Eurythmics to the ridiculousness of his ill-fated supergroup SuperHeavy. The Ringmaster General is a sequel of sorts to Stewart's 2011 solo album The Blackbird Diaries; like the earlier album, this one was written and recorded during a five-day blowout at Blackbird Studios in Nashville, with Stewart leading a crack band of studio cats and bringing in some talented acquaintances to do guest vocals (among them Alison Krauss, Jessie Baylin, and his SuperHeavy partner Joss Stone). The results reveal Stewart's strengths and weaknesses in equal measure; he has a knack for writing a good pop tune, he knows how to get musicians to deliver the goods in the studio, and he's a strong guitar player. However, as a lead vocalist he's average at best, his idea of a good arrangement usually leans to the bombastic, and while this album is supposed to celebrate his love of roots music, his country and R&B leanings here invariably sound forced. On several tunes, Stewart seems to think the best way to make a song sound soulful is to let the backing vocalists get as happy as they want, which makes the opener, "I Got Love," and the closer, "A New Song for Nashville," sound as if they were recorded at a suburban blues bar with several drunk women in the audience intrusively yelling into the mike. Stewart also isn't much of a lyricist, and most of these songs are pockmarked with clich?s and clumsy wordplay that find Stewart trying to celebrate his cool factor and status as a world-class Lothario. For an album that came together in less than a week, The Ringmaster General sounds assured, professional, and polished, all without squeezing the life out of the performances, and the picking from Stewart and his band is splendid throughout. But while Stewart the producer and bandleader earned his paycheck on The Ringmaster General, they should have told Stewart the songwriter and lead singer that he needed to finish his homework before trundling this material into the studio, since the latter guy's work is the anchor that sinks this particular session. ~ Mark Deming
Disc 1
1 I Got Love - (featuring Joss Stone)
2 Just Another Fall - (featuring Diane Birch)
3 Different Man Now, A
4 Drowning in the Blues - (featuring Alison Krauss)
5 Girl in a Catsuit - (featuring Orianthi)
6 Slow Motion Addict No. 2
7 You Took My Love
8 God Only Knows You Now - (featuring Jessie Baylin)
9 Ringmaster General, The
10 Story of Success
11 New Song for Nashville, A
Product Attributes
Artist Stewart,Dave
Label Surfdog
Music Format Compact Disc

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