Q-Music: Captured live
By Gregg Shapiro
By almost anyone’s standard, I Wish You Love: More from The Bodyguard (Arista/Legacy) is an unusual way to commemorate the 25thanniversary of the movie The Bodyguard, as well as its accompanying multi-platinum soundtrack. As film debuts go, Whitney Houston’s paled in comparison with, say, Jennifer Hudson’s. But that didn’t stop the soundtrack from becoming one of the best-selling albums of all time. It didn’t hurt that Houston’s breathtaking cover of Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love” helped lead the way for the soundtrack’s success. The 14 selections on I Wish You Love, all previously unreleased on CD, are meant to supplement the existing The Bodyguard soundtrack. Featured on the album is an alternate mix of “I Will Always Love You,” the “film versions” of “I Have Nothing,” “Run To You,” “Queen of the Night” and more. What makes I Wish You Love especially appealing are the six previously unavailable live recordings from the 1993-95 Bodyguard Tour.
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of attending a live performance by Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox, you will understand why it’s silly for them to release a live album. A live DVD would make more sense considering how much of the SBPJ’s show is also visual (see: Sarah Reich, tap-dancer). Nevertheless, that didn’t stop the group, known for its wonderful re-imaginings of contemporary pop, rock, and hip-hop tunes from releasing the disappointing The New Classics: Recorded Live! (Concord/ Postmodern Jukebox).
Madonna is another artist whose live shows have increasingly become more of a spectacle over the years. So, it makes sense that she would release the concert recording Rebel Heart Tour (Eagle Vision/Universal/Maverick) as a DVD/CD set. The CD includes 13 songs, ranging from “Burning Up” and “Holiday” to “Bitch I’m Madonna” and “Unapologetic Bitch” (sense a theme?), whereas the visually captivating concert footage DVD includes all the songs on the CD and almost ten additional selections.
You might not think that, other than being singer/songwriters, Carole King and Bob Dylan have much in common, but you’d be wrong. Aside from being about a year apart in age, both were nice Jewish kids when they began their careers in the late `50s (King) and early `60s (Dylan). In addition to writing hits for other artists, King and Dylan were also at the forefront of the singer/songwriter movement which reached its peak in the 1970s. As if all of that wasn’t enough, both King and Dylan have recently released live recordings.
King’s Tapestry: Live in Hyde Park (Rockingale/Legacy) is a CD & DVD set that lives up to its title. King performs her classic 1971 album Tapestry in its entirety before a live audience of 65,000. She is joined by her daughter singer/songwriter Louise Goffin on “Where You Lead” and “Will You Love Me Tomorrow.” The remaining songs include early compositions co-written with her late ex-husband Gerry Goffin such as “One Fine Day”, “Go Away Little Girl”, “Locomotion”, “Up On The Roof” and “It Might As Well Rain Until September”, as well as “Jazzman” and a rendition of “I Feel The Earth Move” on which she is joined by the cast of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.
The latest (and 13th) installment in the ongoing Bootleg Series, Trouble No More: 1979-1981 (Columbia/Legacy) follows Dylan’s musical exploits during his brief flirtation with Christianity. The deluxe edition boasts eight CDs containing previously unavailable material dating from `79 to `81. The first two discs present an assortment of live recordings. There are more than 30 rare and unreleased tracks on discs three and four. Discs five through eight are dedicated to concert recordings from Toronto and London, respectively. A DVD simply titled “A Musical Film” features exclusive bonus material. In addition to the extensive liner notes, a 120-page book, “Pressing On,” consists of photographs and more from the period.