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“The only thing that matters is the song,” says singer-songwriter Madeleine Peyroux. That conviction along with a ‘one of a kind’ voice, has carried the Jazz artist from busking on the streets of Paris, all the way to mainstream recognition. Through intensely distinctive renditions of old classics and modern tunes by the likes of Leonard Cohen and The Beatles, Peyroux has proved to be an uncannily insightful ‘interpreter’ with her consistently impeccable choice of material. Peyroux’s new album, The Blue Room, sees the genre-blending singer reworking some landmark musical gems, in a repeat collaboration with longtime Peyroux producer Larry Klein (Joni Mitchell, Walter Becker, Tracy Chapman, Herbie Hancock). The result is a sophisticated album that rather than just ‘crossing over’, seamlessly fuses musical styles together to create an entirely new sound.
The Blue Room started life as Klein’s re-examination of Ray Charles’s classic, Modern Sounds In Country And Western Music, but soon moved away from being strictly an homage to that album. “Madeleine and I decided to branch out to other songs we love,” explains Klein, so alongside tunes from the original ABC Paramount project such as “Bye Bye Love,” “Born To Lose,” “You Don’t Know Me” and the anthemic “I Can’t Stop Loving You” are Randy Newman’s “Guilty,” Warren Zevon’s “Desperadoes Under The Eaves” and John Hartford’s “Gentle On My Mind.” “Ray’s ‘cultural landmark’ album has always been a part of me,” says Larry Klein, “…the project naturally came to mind with Madeleine as a part of it.”
For The Blue Room Larry Klein has again called upon the talents of award-winning engineer/mixer Helik Hadar as well as stellar musicians Dean Parks, Larry Goldings, Jay Bellerose and David Piltch. To this ensemble however, the celebrated producer has added an inspired orchestral element in the shape of Vince Mendoza’s engaging string arrangements (Joni Mitchell, Robbie Williams, Björk and Elvis Costello). Mendoza’s masterful string orchestrations perfectly complement Madeleine’s quest for open musical exploration. The sometimes eerie, often sparse arrangements prove the perfect canvas for Peyroux’s musical palette and seem to effortlessly blend with her voice.
Peyroux has come a long way from the streets of Paris to the word’s grandest concert halls and collaborating with the some of the world’s finest musicians. Still, where other artists might rest on their laurels and bask in the glory of countless gushing reviews, Peyroux continues to fearlessly explore new territories. The charmingly humble artist who ‘didn’t have any expectation of becoming someone that could make a dent in the outside world.’ has done just that.
For more information visit: www.madeleinepeyroux.com