Barry Manilow Saluting Songs About New York on His New Album

by VVN Music

Barry Manilow had some of the biggest hits of the 70's and early 80's, many of which he actually didn't write even though he is a Songwriters Hall of Fame member.  That's one of the things that made Manilow unique in the music of the last five decades. He was as adept at singing his own songs as he was at interpreting the music of others.

Since 2006, Barry has released nine albums with only one, 2011's 15 Minutes, being a strictly Manilow composed set. The rest highlighted the best songs of each decade, love songs, duets and holiday music.

On April 21, Barry will mix originals with covers on the album This is My Town: Songs of New York. In fact, he has split the album evenly between new songs and standards, all of which evoke the spirit and energy of his home town, New York City.

Manilow said "I'm grateful for having been raised there because I've always felt grounded. One of the things I'm most proud of is that having gone through the hurricane of success, I feel I'm still the same guy that took the subway every day to work in Manhattan. And I attribute that grounding to being raised in New York."

The singer recorded dozens of demos of songs about the city while writing his original material. "I didn't want to do a full original album. It felt like it would be cheating the public to not give them the old songs that they knew. I must have done 50 demos of standards as I was writing the original songs. That's what took the longest: to choose the standards. And, of course, to write the originals."

The title song, This Is My Town, sets up the album's musical journey through New York's five boroughs. The track was co-written by Barry Manilow "with my brilliant, long-time collaborator, Bruce Sussman. I'm very proud of the production, arrangement, orchestration and melody. And listen to Bruce's brilliant lyric. Only a New Yorker could have written that lyric."

According to Barry, "the album is like a melting pot – just like New York is. We take you from Brooklyn to Broadway to Birdland. We even wind up in Coney Island. Take a look at the titles and it really does look like you're going from place to place to place. There are different styles. There's pop, there's a little rock and roll, there's jazz, there's a little R&B, and Broadway. That's what I think of when I think of my home town and of New York."

The track list:
  • This Is My Town
  • New York City Rhythm / On Broadway
  • Coney Island
  • Lonely Town
  • Lovin' At Birdland
  • Downtown / Uptown
  • On The Roof
  • I Dig New York
  • The Brooklyn Bridge (Virtual Duet with Mel Tormé)
  • NYC Medley

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