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David Lanz (born June 28, 1950 in Seattle, Washington) is a Grammy-nominated New Age pianist. He has released 13 albums, each having some chart success. His most famous album, Cristofori's Dream, topped the New Age charts in 1988, which was Number One on Billboard's first adult alternative/New Age chart for 27 weeks and eventually sold platinum. Natural States peaked at place 125 on the Billboard 200.
Lanz's goal is to have his music create an atmosphere of enlightenment. In an interview with Barnes & Noble, Lanz stated that he wanted to create an atmosphere similar to that of Steven Halpern's music, but with a "more popular hook in it".
Lanz has said himself, " is the most divinely inspired instrument on the planet. It presents a great attraction to our left-right brain relationship. My goal is to create entertainment that also provides enlightenment."
Jim Brickman (born November 20, 1961) is an American composer and pianist. Brickman is known for his solo piano compositions, which are classified as new age music. However, he is as well known for his original love songs and performing them with vocalists such as Martina McBride, Michael W. Smith, Michelle Wright and others.
His music career started when he was nineteen, when Jim Henson hired him to write tunes for Sesame Street. He was also hired to write commercial jingles while in college.
Brickman signed with Windham Hill Records to release his first album, No Words, in 1994. The song "Rocket To The Moon" from that album was the first solo instrumental song ever to be ranked on Billboard's charts. Four of his albums (By Heart, Picture This, The Gift, and Destiny) have all sold over 500,000 copies, qualifying them as gold records in the United States.
Brickman writes a wide variety of music. Besides his piano compositions and love songs, he has also created arrangements of other songs. Several of his albums feature arrangements of children's music; he has produced two Christmas-themed albums The Gift (1997) and Peace (2003); and his 2005 album Grace concentrates on arrangements of well-known Christian music.
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl is a 2003 adventure film, based on the the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disney theme parks. The story follows pirate Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) and blacksmith Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) as they rescue Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley) from her kidnapping by the cursed crew of the Black Pearl, captained by Hector Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush).
The film was directed by Gore Verbinski and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, and became the first Walt Disney Pictures release to earn a PG-13 rating by the MPAA (all previous WDP releases were rated G or PG). The world premiere was held at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, on June 28, 2003. The Curse of the Black Pearl was an unexpected success, with mostly positive reviews and grossing almost $654 million worldwide. The film became the first in a series, with two back-to-back sequels, Dead Man's Chest and At World's End, released. The film was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Actor for Depp.
Cher (born Cherilyn Sarkisian, May 20, 1946) is an American pop singer-songwriter, actress and record producer. Among her career accomplishments in music, television and film, she has won an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, three Golden Globe Awards and was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Cher rose to prominence in 1965 as one half of the pop/rock duo Sonny & Cher. She subsequently established herself as a solo recording artist, a television star in the 1970s and a film actress in the 1980s.
Her smash hit single "Believe" (1998) is the third biggest-selling single released by a female singer worldwide, the eighth best selling song of the 1990s, She is currently performing at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas with her show "Cher at the Colosseum".
The Cranberries are an Irish rock band who formed in Limerick in 1989. The band consists of vocalist Dolores O'Riordan, guitarist Noel Hogan, bassist Mike Hogan and drummer Fergal Lawler. Although widely associated with alternative rock, the band's sound also incorporates indie pop, post-punk, Irish folk and pop rock elements.
The Cranberries rose to international fame in the 1990s with their debut album, Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We?, which became a commercial success. The group was one of the most successful rock acts of the '90s and sold over 40 million albums worldwide. The band has achieved four top 20 albums on the Billboard 200 chart (Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We?; No Need to Argue; To the Faithful Departed and Bury the Hatchet) and eight top 20 singles on the Modern Rock Tracks chart ("Linger", "Dreams", "Zombie", "Ode to My Family", "Ridiculous Thoughts", "Salvation", "Free to Decide" and "Promises").
In early 2010, after a six-year hiatus, The Cranberries reunited and began a North American tour, followed by shows in Latin America and Europe. The band recorded their sixth album Roses in May 2011, and released it on 27 February 2012.
High School Musical 2 (also known as High School Musical 2: Sing It All Or Nothing!) is the sequel to the Disney Channel Original Movie, High School Musical. It debuted on August 17, 2007 on Disney Channel in the U.S., and on Family in Canada. The premiere brought in a total of 17.3 million viewers in the United States—almost 10 million more than its predecessor—making it, at the time, the highest-rated basic-cable broadcast in U.S. history.
The Fugees were a critically-acclaimed New Jersey hip hop group that rose to fame in the mid-1990s, whose repertoire included elements of soul and Caribbean music, particularly reggae. The members of the group are rapper/singer/producer Wyclef Jean, rapper/singer Lauryn Hill, and rapper Pras Michel. Deriving their name from the term "refugee", Jean and Michel are Haitian Americans, while Hill is African American. The group recorded two albums — one of which, The Score (1996), was a multi-platinum and Grammy-winning success — before disbanding in 1997. Hill and Jean each went on to successful solo recording careers; Michel focused on soundtrack recordings and acting, though he found commercial success with his song "Ghetto Supastar".
Vanessa Lee Carlton (born August 16, 1980) is an American soft rock/Piano pop singer, songwriter, and pianist best known for the Billboard top five, Grammy-nominated single "A Thousand Miles" from her debut album, Be Not Nobody which was released April 30, 2002, and certified platinum in the U.S.
Her music, along with that of her contemporary Michelle Branch to whom she is sometimes compared, has had an influence on female solo pop singer-songwriters in the 21st century, including Kate Voegele, Lights, Sara Bareilles (another piano pop artist), Colbie Caillat and Tristan Prettyman.
Carlton's second album, Harmonium (released November 9, 2004), debuted at number 33 on the U.S. Billboard 200 and had sold 179,000 copies as of February 2006, with the single "White Houses," peaking at 86 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. She subsequently parted company from her record label A&M, though she still holds a dedicated fanbase.
Her third album, Heroes and Thieves, was released on October 9, 2007 by the The Inc./Universal Motown record labels.
Michael Steven Bublé (born 9 September 1975) is a Canadian big band singer. He won several awards, including a Grammy and multiple Juno Awards. While achieving modest chart success in the United States, his 2003 self-titled album has reached the top ten in Lebanon, the UK and his home country. However, he did find commercial success in the U.S. with his 2005 album It's Time. He has sold over 18 million albums. Michael has also appeared on the TV series Rove four times.
The album Michael Bublé was released by Warner Bros. Records just before Valentine's Day in 2003. The album was actually first released by the Warner company in South Africa, where the album went into the Top 5 and was certified Gold. Soon after that, it entered the Canadian album charts. As success in the USA was marginal at best, Bublé started visiting countries all over the world, with the album being successful in places like the Philippines and Singapore. He then moved on to placed like Italy and eventually had chart success in the UK, U.S., Australia and elsewhere soon followed with the album going Platinum and reaching the top ten of the album charts in the UK and Canada and going all the way to #1 in Australia. The album has reached the top 50 of the Billboard 200 album charts in the U.S. His version of George Michael's "Kissing a Fool" was released as a single from the album and reached the top 30 of the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart. "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?" reached the top 30 of the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart as well. His third single "Sway" also reached the top 30 of the Adult Contemporary chart, while a Junkie XL remix of the song reached the top 20 in Australia in May 2004.
Bublé's second studio album, It's Time, debuted as a hugely successful performance. The album reached number 7 on the Billboard 200 album chart and number 2 on the ARIA Album Charts in Australia. It's Time also debuted at number 4 on the UK Album Charts. The album features covers of Beatles and Ray Charles songs, and the hit single "Home".
Styx is an American rock band. Their hit songs have included "Come Sail Away", "Babe", "Lady", "Mr. Roboto", and "Renegade." Styx is the first band to have four consecutive albums certified multi-platinum by the RIAA.
From 1977 to 1981, Styx released four consecutive albums that have been certified Multi-Platinum (signifying at least 2 million units sold) by the RIAA: The Grand Illusion, Pieces of Eight, Cornerstone, and Paradise Theatre. They were the first band recognized to have achieved this feat when the RIAA began certifying Multi-Platinum albums in 1984.
A longstanding, oft-repeated claim in the music industry and the mainstream press is that Styx were the first band to release four consecutive triple-platinum albums, signifying at least 3 million units sold.
James "J.Y." Young – Vocals, guitar, keyboards
Tommy Shaw – Vocals, guitars, mandolin, autoharp, talkbox
Todd Sucherman – Drums, percussion, vocals
Lawrence Gowan – Vocals, keyboards, guitar
Ricky Phillips – Bass guitar, vocals
Chuck Panozzo – Bass guitar, vocals
The Simpsons is an American animated sitcom which was created by Matt Groening for the Fox Broadcasting Company. It is a satirical parody of the middle class American lifestyle epitomized by its titular family, which consists of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie. The show is set in the fictional town of Springfield, and it lampoons many aspects of the human condition, as well as American culture, society as a whole, and television itself.
The family was conceived by Groening shortly before a pitch for a series of animated shorts with the producer James L. Brooks. Groening created a dysfunctional family and named the characters after members of his own family, substituting Bart for his own name. The shorts became a part of The Tracey Ullman Show on April 19, 1987. After a three-season run, the sketch was developed into a half-hour prime time show and was an early hit for Fox, becoming the first Fox series to land in the Top 30 ratings in a season (1992-1993).
Since its debut on December 17, 1989, the show has broadcast 420 episodes and the twentieth season will commence airing in on September 28, 2008. The Simpsons Movie, a feature-length film, was released in theaters worldwide on July 26 and July 27, 2007, and has grossed approximately US$526.2 million worldwide to date.
The Simpsons has won dozens of awards since it debuted as a series, including 24 Emmy Awards, 26 Annie Awards and a Peabody Award. Time magazine's December 31, 1999 issue named it the 20th century's best television series, and on January 14, 2000 it was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The Simpsons is the longest-running American sitcom and the longest-running American animated program. Homer's annoyed grunt "D'oh!" has been adopted into the English lexicon, while The Simpsons has influenced many adult-oriented animated sitcoms.
The series' distinctive theme song was composed by musician Danny Elfman in 1989, after Groening approached him requesting a retro style piece. This piece, which took two days to create, has been noted by Elfman as the most popular of his career.
Miley Ray Cyrus (born Destiny Hope Cyrus; November 23, 1992) is an American pop singer and television and film actress. Cyrus is best known for starring as the title character in the Disney Channel series Hannah Montana. Following the success of Hannah Montana, in October 2006, a soundtrack CD was released in which she sang eight songs from the show. Cyrus' solo music career began with the release of her debut album, Meet Miley Cyrus on June 23, 2007, which included her first top ten single "See You Again". Her second album, Breakout, was released on July 22, 2008. Breakout is Cyrus' first album that does not involve the Hannah Montana franchise. Both albums debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200. In 2008, she appeared in the Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert film.
Cyrus also starred in Bolt in 2008, and recorded "I Thought I Lost You" for the soundtrack for which she earned a Golden Globe nomination. She starred in the film spin-off of Hannah Montana, titled Hannah Montana: The Movie which was released on April 10, 2009. In 2008, Cyrus was listed in Time magazine's 100 Most Influential People in The World. Forbes magazine ranked her #35 on the "Celebrity 100" list with earnings of $25 million in 2008. Her rank improved to #29 in 2009.
Daft Punk is an electronic music duo consisting of French musicians Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo (born February 8, 1974) and Thomas Bangalter (born January 3, 1975). Daft Punk reached significant popularity in the late 1990s house movement in France and met with continued success in the years following, combining elements of house with synthpop. The duo is also credited with producing songs that are considered essential in the French house scene. They were managed from 1996 to 2008 by Pedro Winter (Busy P), the head of Ed Banger Records. Early in the group's career, the band members were strongly influenced by groups such as The Beach Boys and The Rolling Stones. Bangalter and de Homem-Christo were originally in a band called Darlin', which disbanded after a short period of time, leaving the two to experiment musically on their own.
The duo became Daft Punk, and released their critically acclaimed debut album Homework in 1997. The 2001 release Discovery was even more successful, driven by the club singles "One More Time", "Digital Love" and "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger". In March 2005, the duo released the album Human After All to mixed reviews. However, the singles "Robot Rock" and "Technologic" achieved success in the United Kingdom. Daft Punk toured throughout 2006 and 2007 and released the live album Alive 2007, which won a Grammy award for Best Electronic/Dance Album. The duo composed the score of the film Tron: Legacy and in 2010 released the soundtrack album of the film. Daft Punk are noted for their elaborate live shows, in which visual elements and effects are incorporated with the music. The group is also known for its emphasis on visual and story components associated with their musical productions, as well as for wearing disguises, most notably, ornate robot costumes in public and while performing.
The Shrek film series from DreamWorks Animation, based on William Steig's picture book, Shrek!, consists of eight projects, three of which have been released as feature films: Shrek (2001), Shrek 2 (2004), and Shrek the Third (2007). Shrek Goes Fourth is currently in pre-production, aiming for release in 2010. Shrek 5 is a sequel proposed for release in 2013. A spin-off project, the Christmas television special Shrek The Halls, premiered on ABC in the USA and worldwide in 2007 to successful ratings. One film is in the development phase, Puss in Boots: The Story of an Ogre Killer, expected to be released in 2011.
Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street: A Musical Thriller is a Tony Award-winning musical with a book by Hugh Wheeler and music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. The musical is based on the 19th century fictional character Sweeney Todd, though more specifically, the 1973 play Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street by Christopher Bond.
Sweeney Todd opened on Broadway at the Uris Theatre on March 1, 1979 and ran for 557 performances. It was directed by Harold Prince with musical staging by Larry Fuller, and starred Len Cariou as Sweeney Todd and Angela Lansbury as Mrs. Lovett. The musical tells the story of Sweeney Todd, who was previously known as Benjamin Barker, who returns from Australia where he has spent fifteen years on false charges. When he learns from Mrs. Lovett, whose meat pies are the worst in London, that his wife poisoned herself after being raped by Judge Turpin (the man who wrongly imprisoned him), and that his daughter is the ward of the same Judge Turpin, he vows revenge.
A feature film adaptation of Sweeney Todd, jointly produced by Dreamworks and Warner Bros., was released on December 21, 2007. Tim Burton directed from a screenplay by John Logan. It stars Johnny Depp as Todd (Depp received an Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe award for his performance), Helena Bonham Carter as Mrs. Lovett, Alan Rickman as Judge Turpin, Sacha Baron Cohen as Signor Pirelli, Jamie Campbell Bower as Anthony Hope, Laura Michelle Kelly as The Beggar Woman, Jayne Wisener as Johanna, Ed Sanders as Toby, and Timothy Spall as Beadle Bamford.
Sondheim's score is one of his most complex to date, with orchestrations by his long-time collaborator Jonathan Tunick. It relies heavily on counterpoint and rich, angular harmonies. Its compositional style has been compared to those of Maurice Ravel, Sergei Prokofiev, and Bernard Herrmann (who scored Alfred Hitchcock films). Sondheim also quotes the ancient Dies Irae Gregorian chant, both as part of the eponymous ballad that runs throughout the score, later heard in a musical inversion, and in the accompaniment to "Epiphany". He also relies heavily on leitmotif - at least twenty distinct ones can be identified throughout the score. Depending on how and where the show is presented, it is sometimes considered an opera. Sondheim himself has described the piece as a "black operetta." An original Broadway cast recording was released in 1979. It included the Judge's "Johanna" and the tooth-pulling contest from Act I, which had been cut in previews.
Sinéad Marie Bernadette O'Connor (born December 8, 1966) is a Grammy Award winning Irish singer and songwriter.
O'Connor's first two albums (1987's The Lion and the Cobra and 1990's I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got) gained considerable attention and mostly positive reviews. She was praised for her voice and her original songs. She was also noted for her appearance: her shaved head, often angry expression, and sometimes shapeless or unusual clothing. The album I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got featrued Marco Pirroni and Kevin_Mooney both of Adam and the Ants fame and contained her international breakthrough hit "Nothing Compares 2 U", a song written by Prince and originally recorded and released by a side project of his, The Family. Her 2002 album, Sean-Nós Nua, marked a departure in that O'Connor interpreted or, in her own words, "sexed up" traditional Irish folk songs, including several in the Irish language.
O'Connor released two songs from her album Theology to download for free from her official website: "If You Had a Vineyard" and "Jeremiah (Something Beautiful)". The album, a collection of covered and original Rastafari spiritual songs, was released in June 2007. The first single from the album, the Rice/Lloyd Webber classic "I Don't Know How to Love Him", was released on April 30, 2007. To promote the album, O'Connor toured extensively Europe and North America.
Linkin Park is an American rock band from Agoura Hills, California. Since their formation in 1996, the band has sold more than 50 million albums and won two Grammy Awards. They achieved mainstream success with their debut album, Hybrid Theory, which was certified Diamond by the RIAA in 2005. Their following studio album, Meteora, continued the band's success, topping the Billboard 200’s album charts in 2003, and was followed by extensive touring and charity work around the world.
Recognized for their adaptation of the nu metal and rap rock genre into a radio-friendly yet densely-layered style in Hybrid Theory and Meteora, the band moved away from this and explored a variety of other genres in their latest studio album, Minutes to Midnight. The album topped the Billboard charts and had the third best debut week of any album that year. They are also known for their several collaborations, most notably with rapper Jay-Z in their mash-up album Collision Course, and many other artists on Reanimation.
Alan Eugene Jackson (born 17 October 1958 in Newnan, Georgia) is an American country singer-songwriter who has sold over 50 million records. He was influenced by the new traditional country of the 1980s, and he was one of the most popular country singers of the 1990s, blending both honky tonk and mainstream country sounds and penning many of his own hits. His success continued into the 2000s and his music became increasingly counterposed with that of more mainstream country acts that were moving toward a more pop music sound. He is the recipient and nominee of multiple awards. He was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 2001.
Frédéric Chopin (1 March 1810 – 17 October 1849) was a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist of the Romantic period. He is widely regarded as the greatest Polish composer, and ranks as one of music's greatest tone poets.
He was born in the village of Żelazowa Wola, in the Duchy of Warsaw, to a Polish mother and French-expatriate father, and in his early life was regarded as a child-prodigy pianist. In November 1830, at the age of 20, Chopin went abroad; following the suppression of the Polish November Uprising of 1830–31, he became one of many expatriates of the Polish "Great Emigration."
In Paris, he made a comfortable living as a composer and piano teacher, while giving few public performances. A Polish patriot,
Chopin's extant compositions were written primarily for the piano as a solo instrument. Though technically demanding, Chopin's style emphasizes nuance and expressive depth rather than virtuosity. Chopin invented musical forms such as the ballade and was responsible for major innovations in forms such as the piano sonata, waltz, nocturne, étude, impromptu and prelude. His works are mainstays of Romanticism in 19th-century classical music.
Antonín Leopold Dvořák (September 8, 1841 – May 1, 1904) was a Czech composer of Romantic music, who employed the idioms and melodies of the folk music of his native Bohemia and Moravia. His works include operas, symphonic, choral and chamber music. His best-known works are his New World Symphony (particularly the slow movement), as well as his Slavonic Dances, American String Quartet, and Cello Concerto in B minor.
Dvořák wrote in a variety of forms: his nine symphonies generally stick to classical models that Beethoven would have recognised, but he also worked in the newly developed symphonic poem form and the influence of Richard Wagner is apparent in some works. Many of his works also show the influence of Czech folk music, both in terms of rhythms and melodic shapes; perhaps the best known examples are the two sets of Slavonic Dances. Dvořák also wrote operas (the best known of which is Rusalka); serenades for string orchestra and wind ensemble; chamber music (including a number of string quartets, and quintets); songs; choral music; and piano music.
Éric Alfred Leslie Satie (Honfleur, 17 May 1866 – Paris, 1 July 1925) was a French composer and pianist. Starting with his first composition in 1884, he signed his name as Erik Satie.
Satie was introduced as a "gymnopedist" in 1887, shortly before writing his most famous compositions, the Gymnopédies. Later, he also referred to himself as a "phonometrician" (meaning "someone who measures sounds") preferring this designation to that of "musician", after having been called "a clumsy but subtle technician" in a book on contemporary French composers published in 1911.
In addition to his body of music, Satie also left a remarkable set of writings, having contributed work for a range of publications, from the dadaist 391 to the American Vanity Fair. Although in later life he prided himself on always publishing his work under his own name, in the late nineteenth century he appears to have used pseudonyms such as Virginie Lebeau and François de Paule in some of his published writings.
Satie was a colourful figure in the early 20th century Parisian avant-garde. He was a precursor to later artistic movements such as minimalism, repetitive music, and the Theatre of the Absurd.
The Aristocats is a 1970 animated feature produced and released by Walt Disney Productions. It is the twentieth animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. Based on a story by Tom McGowan and Tom Rowe, the story revolves around a family of aristocratic cats, and how an alley cat acquaintance helps them after a butler has kidnapped them to gain his mistress' fortune which was meant to go to them. It was originally released to theaters by Buena Vista Distribution on December 11, 1970. The title is a pun on the word aristocrats.
The film's basic idea - an animated romantic musical comedy about talking cats in France - had previously been used in the UPA animated feature Gay Purr-ee.
"The Aristocats" is the title song from the 1970 movie of the same name. It was written by Robert & Richard Sherman at the end of the eight year tenure working for Walt Disney Productions. Actor and singer Maurice Chevalier came out of retirement to sing this song for the motion picture's soundtrack. He recorded it in English as well as in French translation ("Naturellement - les Aristocats!").
Little Shop of Horrors is a rock musical by composer Alan Menken and writer Howard Ashman, about a nerdy florist shop worker who raises a plant that feeds on human blood. The musical was based on the low-budget 1960 black comedy The Little Shop of Horrors, directed by Roger Corman. The music, composed by Menken in the style of 1960s rock and roll, doo-wop and early Motown, included several show-stoppers including "Skid Row (Downtown)", "Somewhere That's Green", and "Suddenly, Seymour", as well as the title song.
In addition to the original long-running 1982 off-Broadway production and subsequent Broadway production, the musical has been performed all over the world, including in Buenos Aires, Sydney, Vienna, São Paulo, Toronto, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Paris, Berlin, Athens, Budapest, Reykjavík, Jerusalem, Rome, Tokyo, Zurich, Athens, Barcelona, Cologne, Mexico City, Auckland, Oslo, Singapore City, Johannesburg, Madrid, Stockholm, Seinajoki, Akureyri, Vaasa, and London. The musical was also performed in Bogota, Colombia in July 2008. Because of its small cast and relatively simple orchestrations, it has become popular with community theatre and high school groups. The musical was also made into a 1986 film of the same name, directed by Frank Oz.
Sarah Ann McLachlan, OC, OBC (born January 28, 1968) is a Grammy-winning Canadian musician, singer and songwriter.
She is known for the emotional sound of her ballads. Some of her most popular songs include "Angel", "Building a Mystery", "Adia", "Possession", "Fallen", "I Will Remember You", and "World on Fire". As of 2006, she has sold over 40 million albums worldwide. Her best-selling album to date is Surfacing, for which she won eight Juno Awards and three Grammy Awards. In addition to her personal artistic efforts, she founded the Lilith Fair tour, which showcased female musicians in the late 1990s.
Her 1991 album, Solace, was her mainstream breakthrough in Canada, spawning the hit singles "The Path of Thorns (Terms)" and "Into the Fire". Solace also marked the beginning of her partnership with Pierre Marchand. Marchand and McLachlan have been collaborators ever since, with Marchand producing all of McLachlan's albums and occasionally co-writing songs.
1994's Fumbling Towards Ecstasy was an immediate smash hit in Canada. From her Nettwerk connection, her piano version of the song "Possession" was included on the first Due South soundtrack in 1996. Over the next two years, Fumbling Towards Ecstasy quietly became McLachlan's international breakthrough as well, scaling the charts in a number of countries.
Following the success from Fumbling Towards Ecstasy, McLachlan returned in 1997 with Surfacing, her best selling album to date. Earning her two Grammy awards and four Junos, the album has since sold over 11 million copies worldwide and brought her much international success
Bette Davis Midler (born December 1, 1945) is an American singer, actress and comedian, also known to her fans as The Divine Miss M. She is named after the actress Bette Davis although Davis pronounced her first name in two syllables, and Midler uses one (/bɛt/). During her career, she has won four Grammy Awards, four Golden Globes, three Emmy Awards, and a Tony Award, and has been nominated for two Academy Awards. She is currently performing a new concert show, The Showgirl Must Go On, live five nights a week as one of the current headliners at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas (together with Cher and Elton John).
Gabriel Urbain Fauré (12 May 1845 – 4 November 1924) was a French composer, organist, pianist, and teacher. He was the foremost French composer of his generation, and his musical style influenced many 20th century composers. His harmonic and melodic language affected how harmony was later taught.
Evita is the film adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical based on the life of Eva Perón. It was directed by Alan Parker and starred Madonna, Antonio Banderas and Jonathan Pryce. It was released on December 25, 1996 by Hollywood and Cinergi Pictures.
The Hillsong United band is an Australian rock and worship band, a part of Hillsong Church's youth ministry Hillsong United. Their music is a contemporary style of praise and worship tempered with mainstream rock.
Current members of the Hillsong United band include Jonathon Douglass (J.D.), Jadwin "Jad" Gillies, Holly Watson, Annie Garratt, Bec Gillies, and Michelle Fragar, daughter of Russell Fragar. Michael Guy Chislett plays guitar and Matthew Tennikoff plays bass guitar. Former original drummer Luke Munns made a transition from the drums to front the rock/indie band LUKAS. Popular New Zealand artist Brooke Fraser recently joined the band when she joined the church, first appearing on United We Stand.
The annual Hillsong United CD/DVD was recorded over many years during their October youth conference Encounterfest, with the album released in the first quarter of the following year. The 2007 album All of the Above was the first album to be fully studio recorded, containing videos of songs on the DVD. The band has toured in a number of countries, leading worship to thousands in North and South America, Europe and Asia.
Songs for a New World is a work of musical theater written and composed by Jason Robert Brown. Its original off-Broadway production ran for 28 performances at the WPA Theater in New York City in 1995. The show sits on the boundary between musical and song cycle, but it is neither; it is an abstract musical, a series of songs all connected by theme rather than narrative. The show employs four performers who do not literally play the same characters throughout the show but who do have consistently developing character arcs nonetheless. It is far more than a revue or song cycle but it's not a standard narrative book musical. Composer Jason Robert Brown has said of his show, "It's about one moment. It's about hitting the wall and having to make a choice, or take a stand, or turn around and go back."
The original cast consisted of Brooks Ashmanskas, Andrea Burns, Jessica Molaskey, and Billy Porter (Porter's part was sung by Ty Taylor on the original cast recording). Daisy Prince, daughter of Broadway director Harold Prince directed. The original band consisted of Jason Robert Brown on piano, Randy Landau on bass, Tom Partington on drums, Joe Reina on keyboards, and Warren Smith & Rob McEwan on percussion. Songs for a New World was Jason Robert Brown's first produced show.
The piano features heavily throughout the show's music and because of its small cast and orchestra, Songs for a New World has become a favorite small show for colleges and local theatres, despite its vocally demanding score. The music of Songs for a New World is heavily influenced by a broad range of musical genres, including pop, gospel, jazz and classical music. Many of the songs combine elements of two or more of these genres. Some of the songs reference well-known historical and fictional characters, including Martin Luther King Jr., Mrs. Santa Claus, and Betsy Ross.
Sir Elton Hercules John CBE (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight on 25 March 1947) is an English pop/rock singer, composer and pianist.
In his four-decade career, John has been one of the dominant forces in rock and popular music, especially during the 1970s. He has sold over 200 million records, making him one of the most successful artists of all time. He has more than 50 Top 40 hits including seven consecutive No. 1 U.S. albums, 59 Top 40 singles, 16 Top 10, four No. 2 hits, and nine No. 1 hits. He has won five Grammy awards and one Academy Award. His success has had a profound impact on popular music and has contributed to the continued popularity of the piano in rock and roll. In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked him #49 on their list of the 100 greatest artists of all time.
Some of the characteristics of John's musical talent include an ability to quickly craft melodies for the lyrics of songwriting partner Bernie Taupin, his former rich tenor (now baritone) voice, his classical and gospel-influenced piano, the aggressive orchestral arrangements of Paul Buckmaster among others and the flamboyant fashions, outlandishly excessive eyeglasses, and on-stage showmanship, especially evident during the 1970s.
John was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994. He has been heavily involved in the fight against AIDS since the late 1980s, and was knighted in 1998. He entered into a civil partnership with David Furnish on 21 December 2005 and continues to be a champion for LGBT social movements. On April 9, 2008, John held a benefit concert for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, raising $2.5 million.
Evanescence is an American rock band founded in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1995 by singer/pianist Amy Lee and guitarist Ben Moody.
After recording two private EPs and a demo CD named Origin, with the help of Bigwig Enterprises in 2000, the band released their first full-length album, Fallen, on Wind-up Records in 2003. Fallen sold more than 15 million copies worldwide and helped the band win two Grammy Awards. A year later, Evanescence released their first live album, Anywhere but Home, which sold more than one million copies worldwide. In 2006, the band released their second studio album, The Open Door, which has sold more than four million copies.
The band has suffered several line-up changes, including co-founder Moody leaving in 2003, followed by guitarist John LeCompt and drummer Rocky Gray in 2007. Lee is now the only original member of Evanescence remaining in the band.
Samuel "Sammy" Louis Nestico (born February 6, 1924 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) is a prolific and well known composer and arranger of big band music. Nestico is most known for his arrangements for the Count Basie orchestra.
Bugsy Malone is a 1976 musical film, very loosely based on events in Chicago, Illinois in the Prohibition era, specifically, the exploits of gangsters like Al Capone as dramatized in cinema. The tongue-in-cheek movie stars children as the gangsters and their molls, toning down the subject matter sufficiently to receive a "G" rating. The plot concerns the manufacture of a brand of custard, which is used first in cream-topped pies (being hit with one in the face "kills" the character) then later in "splurge guns" that enable the dessert to be deployed on an unprecedented level. The musical centers on Fat Sam's Grand Slam speakeasy.
Written and directed by Alan Parker produced by Alan Marshall with executive producer David Puttnam, the film stars Scott Baio as the title character, with Jodie Foster in the role of Fat Sam's moll Tallulah. The music and lyrics are by singer-songwriter Paul Williams. All the songs on the soundtrack were actually performed by adults, including Williams himself, in his unmistakable high-pitched voice, and lip-synched by the cast. To commemorate its 30th anniversary, the film was re-released in limited cinemas in the UK on December 8, 2006.
Backstreet Boys are a Grammy-nominated American pop group. They were the first group launched by fallen boy band mogul Lou Pearlman. They have had 13 Top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 and have sold approximately 100 million albums, making them the best selling boy band of all time; they were number 1 in concert and album sales from 1997-2005 (when they earned $533.1 million). Two of their albums - Millennium (at #36) and Backstreet Boys (at #40) - are among the top 40 most popular albums of all-time.
After returning to the music scene in 2005, their sound changed dramatically, incorporating only live instruments (some of which they play themselves) and a more guitar and piano driven pop rock sound. The four-member group consists of Nick Carter, Howie Dorough, Brian Littrell and A. J. McLean. Original member Kevin Richardson left the group on June 23, 2006 to begin a family, but the four-piece refused to rule out a possible return for the singer.
Philip David Charles Collins, LVO (born 30 January 1951 Chiswick, London) is an English singer-songwriter, drummer and actor best known as the lead singer and drummer of English progressive rock group Genesis and as a Grammy and Academy Award-winning solo artist. He has also appeared in several films.
Collins sang the lead vocals on eight American chart-toppers between 1984 and 1989; seven as a solo artist and one with Genesis. His singles, often dealing with lost love, ranged from the drum-heavy "In the Air Tonight", to the dance pop of "Sussudio", to the political statements of his most successful song, "Another Day In Paradise". His international popularity transformed Genesis from a progressive rock group to a regular on the pop charts and an early MTV mainstay. Collins' professional career began as a drummer, first with obscure rock group Flaming Youth and then more famously with Genesis. In Genesis, Collins originally supplied backing vocals for front man Peter Gabriel, singing lead on only two songs: "For Absent Friends" from 1971's Nursery Cryme album and "More Fool Me" from Selling England by the Pound, which was released in 1973. On Gabriel's departure in 1975, Collins became the group's lead singer. As the decade closed, Genesis's first international hit, "Follow You, Follow Me", demonstrated a drastic change from the band's early years. His concurrent solo career, heavily influenced by his personal life, brought both him and Genesis commercial success. According to Atlantic Records, Collins' total worldwide sales as a solo artist, as of 2002, were 150 million.
Aerosmith is an American hard rock band, sometimes referred to as "The Bad Boys from Boston" The band was formed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1970. Guitarist Joe Perry and bassist Tom Hamilton, originally in a band together called the Jam Band, met up with singer Steven Tyler, drummer Joey Kramer, and guitarist Ray Tabano, and formed Aerosmith. By 1971, Tabano was replaced by Brad Whitford, and the band began developing a following in Boston.
They were signed to Columbia Records in 1972 and released a string of multi-platinum albums, beginning with their 1973 eponymous debut album. In 1975, the band broke into the mainstream with the album Toys in the Attic, and their 1976 follow-up Rocks cemented their status as hard rock superstars. The band did not fare well between 1980 and 1984, releasing a lone album, Rock in a Hard Place, which only went gold, failing to match the successes of their previous efforts.
Although Perry and Whitford returned in 1984 and the band signed a new deal with Geffen Records, it wasn't until the band sobered up and released 1987's Permanent Vacation that they regained the level of popularity they had experienced in the 1970s. After 38 years of performing, the band continues to tour and record music.
Michelle Jacquet Branch-Landau (born July 2, 1983) is an American singer, songwriter and guitarist. She made her debut in 2000, and released the platinum-selling albums The Spirit Room and Hotel Paper in August 2001 and June 2003 respectively. During this period, she collaborated with Santana on the single "The Game of Love", which won a Grammy Award. In 2004, she formed the musical duo The Wreckers with fellow musician Jessica Harp. Michelle Branch will release her first solo album with Warner Bros. Nashville, Everything Comes and Goes, in February 2009.
Edward "Eddie" Pola (June 23, 1907, New York City – November 3, 1995, Jackson County, Oregon) was an actor, radio/television producer, and songwriter.
In the 1920s, Pola began to write songs. He scored one of England's first sound films, Harmony Heaven (1929). Toward the end of the decade, he moved to the United States to produce dramatic radio programs, and continued as a producer, moving into television in the 1950s.
George Wyle (March 22, 1916 – May 2, 2003), born Bernard Weissman, was an American orchestra leader and composer best known for having written the theme song to 1960s television sitcom Gilligan's Island.
Five for Fighting is the stage name of American singer-songwriter John Ondrasik. His 2000 album America Town went platinum in the U.S. largely due to the success of the song "Superman (It's Not Easy)" following the September 11 attacks in 2001. The 2004 album The Battle for Everything has also enjoyed chart success in the United States. Ondrasik has also released a DualDisc of his 2004 album which has one side containing The Battle for Everything in its entirety and the other side being a DVD containing bonus footage and the "100 Years" music video. Five for Fighting's fourth album, Two Lights, was released on August 1, 2006.
Elvis Aaron Presley (January 8, 1935–August 16, 1977, middle name sometimes written Aron)a was an American singer, musician and actor. A cultural icon, he is commonly referred to as the "The King of Rock 'n' Roll" or "The King".
In 1954, Presley began his career as the first performer of rockabilly, an uptempo fusion of country and rhythm and blues with a strong back beat. His novel versions of existing songs, mixing "black" and "white" sounds, made him popular—and controversial—as did his uninhibited stage and television performances. He recorded songs in the rock and roll genre, with tracks like "Hound Dog" and "Jailhouse Rock" later embodying the style. Presley had a versatile voice and had unusually wide success encompassing other genres, including gospel, blues, ballads and pop. To date, he has been inducted into four music halls of fame.
In the 1960s, Presley made the majority of his thirty-one movies—mainly poorly reviewed, but financially successful, musicals. In 1968, he returned with acclaim to live music in a television special, and thereafter performed across the U.S., notably in Las Vegas. Throughout his career, he set records for concert attendance, television ratings and recordings sales. He is one of the best-selling and most influential artists in the history of popular music. Health problems, drug dependency and other factors led to his premature death at age 42.
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