Matters of the Heart

Matters of the Heart

by Patti LuPonePatti LuPone


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Patti LuPone has been sparing in her solo recordings, and in a sense this can actually be considered her studio debut, since her first album was a live collection that consisted largely of songs with which she was associated from her stage appearances, and her second was an Irving Berlin tribute by the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra on which she was virtually a guest artist. Matters of the Heart, it's clear, is intended to serve as the basis for a new nightclub and concert act for LuPone, but it works equally well as a recording. Working with producer Scott Wittman and arranger/musical director Dick Gallagher, she has put together a well-chosen and carefully sequenced set of 20 songs following a life and its emotional experiences from youth to maturity. She began the process of picking material with the intention of avoiding show music and looking for new songs and pop tunes; she ended up with a mixture of the three. Theater composers such as Frank Wildhorn, Bob Merrill, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II, Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane, Stephen Sondheim, Rupert Holmes, and Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty are represented, but so are pop songwriters such as John Lennon and Paul McCartney, Jimmy Webb, Beth Nielsen Chapman, Randy Newman, and Judy Collins. Standards such as "The Boy Next Door," "A Wonderful Guy," and "Hello, Young Lovers" share space with songs well known to theater fans, such as Sondheim's "Not a Day Goes By" and "I Never Do Anything Twice," and songs familiar to singer-songwriter fans, such as Newman's "Real Emotional Girl" and Collins' "My Father." Using chamber music arrangements for piano and string quartet and placing the songs in the context of the album's story, LuPone reimagines them in a way that makes them new. But the real delights among the song selections come with the obscure titles, not all of which are by obscure songwriters. For example, the Lennon and McCartney composition "It's for You," written for Cilla Black, who took it into the U.K. Top Ten in 1964, but only a negligible chart entry in the U.S., will be new to most listeners. The truly new material, including three excellent songs by John Bucchino and two by Dillie Keane, hold their own, and "I Regret Everything," a reversal of Edith Piaf's anthem "Je Ne Regrette Rien," which LuPone sings in an exaggerated French accent, is a comic tour de force. All of the material is enhanced by the sequencing, which builds a life story from young, exuberant love to philosophical reflections and complications, sophistication and jadedness, and finally mature thoughts about children and the passage of time. The only thing better than listening to the album itself would be hearing LuPone perform it live, which is probably the idea. [Matters of the Heart was re-released on CD in 2015.]

Product Details

Release Date: 09/18/2015
Label: Broadway Records
UPC: 0888295256193
catalogNumber: 2415
Rank: 53920

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Patti LuPone   Primary Artist,Vocals
Michael Williams   Choir, Chorus
Rick Dolan   Violin
Scott Wittman   Choir, Chorus
Dick Gallagher   Piano,Choir, Chorus
Mia Wu   Violin
Rob Fisher   Choir, Chorus
Erin Eagan   Choir, Chorus
Ian Frow   Choir, Chorus
Lisa Ralia Heffter   Viola
Chungsun Kim   Cello
Lisa Loosemore   Choir, Chorus
Danielle Vignjevich   Choir, Chorus
Finty Williams   Choir, Chorus
Mark Smith   Choir, Chorus

Technical Credits

Stephen Sondheim   Composer
Beth Nielsen Chapman   Composer
Judy Collins   Composer
John Lennon   Composer
Paul McCartney   Composer
Randy Newman   Composer
Richard Rodgers   Composer
Albert Hammond   Composer
Rupert Holmes   Composer
Jimmy Webb   Composer
John Bucchino   Composer
Patti LuPone   Liner Notes
Oscar Hammerstein   Composer
Isham Jones   Composer
Hugh Martin   Composer
Johnny Mercer   Composer
Frank Wildhorn   Composer
Cynthia Daniels   Engineer
Bob Merrill   Composer
John Weidman   Liner Notes
Ralph Blane   Composer
Stephen Flaherty   Composer
Scott Wittman   Director,Recording Producer
Dick Gallagher   Arranger,Musical Director
Adele Anderson   Composer
Dillie Keane   Composer
Bill Burnett   Composer
Lynn Ahrens   Composer
Nan Knighton   Composer
Van Dean   Choir President
Michael Hazelwood   Composer
Gene Willadsen   Composer
Michel Philippe-Gérard   Composer
Peggy Sarlin   Composer

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