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Tonys 2018


It's Tony Awards season, and so Ken and Erik are offering columns about this year's awards, some predictions, and other thoughts on the history of the Tonys in general. These are both perfect lead-ins to Sunday's ceremony!

To complement Ken's and Erik's columns, I'd like to offer up the following two albums for your consideration:

  • 2018 Tony Awards Season  - You'll find tracks from this year's Tony-nominated shows--as well as the other musicals--that opened this season, along with a couple of terrific surprises on this just-out album.
  • A Letter to Harvey Milk - This show couldn't get a Tony nomination this year, because it opened off-Broadway. Nonetheless, it's an intriguing piece of writing (and listening), and as all of the other cast albums for the season are mentioned in Erik's and Ken's columns, I put it here.

Remember, if you need to add any of the recordings mentioned here and in the guys' blogs to your collection, you can find links to them in the carousels on the BwayTunes.com homepage. 

You'll hear Broadway's 2017-2018 season unfold with this week's Spotify playlist. I've included cuts from all of the cast albums of the shows that have opened, augmented with tracks featuring Tony-nominated performers in other roles and a few other surprises. Hope you have fun with it!

Harbinger Records has just released its most recent edition of its Songwriter Showcase Series. A two-disc set featuring songs by Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt, it contains an incredible selection of never-released demos and other gems! It’s our current free download.

Take a look at the marvelously diverse array of new music that we've gotten for you, particularly:

  • Carousel - Rodgers and Hammerstein's 1945 classic has gotten a much-discussed revival with a great array of vocalists! Five of them, in fact, are Tony nominated. Listening to this new album will help you understand why.
  • My Fair Lady - Lerner and Loewe's beloved musicalization of Shaw's Pygmalion is delighting audiences at Lincoln Center Theater, and this new cast recording will let you savor the joys of both the writers' work and the lead performances of Harry Hadden-Paton, Lauren Ambrose, and Norbert Leo Butz.

In addition to these albums, you’ll want to check out these new releases, which can be found in the main carousel at the top of the home page and in the “New and Recommended” one at the bottom of the page.

  • Mean Girls - The new musical based on the Tina Fey movie has some bubbly tunes from Jeff Richmond and Nell Benjamin that prove to be wonderfully infectious! Plus there are some great performers delivering them, notably Tony nominee Taylor Louderman.
  • Hair - 50th Anniversary Cast Recording - It's hard to believe that this rock musical is squarely hitting middle age. This new album from England reminds us of how the tunes are still remarkably vibrant.
  • Frozen - You can enjoy the Broadway incarnation of this hit movie at long last! Caissie Levy and Patti Murin headline this company and are in great voice, and there are also 12 new tunes by Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez to enjoy.
  • Sing Happy - The amazing Audra McDonald's recent New York Philharmonic concert is captured in all its glory on this release. What makes it particularly exciting are the number of songs on here that she's never recorded before.
  • Prince of Broadway - The recording of this celebration of the career and vision of director-producer Harold Prince allows listeners to savor both his genius and the history of musical theater while delighting in some terrific new interpretations of classic songs.
  • Hello Again - A host of Broadway vets, from Tony winners Audra McDonald and Martha Plimpton to Cheyenne Jackson and Sam Underwood, are featured on this soundtrack recording for the movie version of Michael John LaChiusa's 1993 musical.
  • Jesus Christ Superstar - John Legend, Sara Bareilles, and Brandon Victor Dixon delivered terrific performances on NBC's live broadcast of this Andrew Lloyd Webber--Tim Rice classic. It's fantastic having this soundtrack recording that preserves their work.
  • Cy Coleman - A Jazzman's Broadway - The songwriter-performer lends his distinct jazz sensibility to a trio of musicals on this new release. He covers songs from two Rodgers and Hammerstein tuners (Flower Drum Song & South Pacific), as well as ones from Harold Arlen and E.Y. "Yip" Harburg's Jamaica.
  • "True Love" - Patti Murin is sounding pretty extraordinary on this last of four singles of new songs written for the show that's based on the phenomenally successful movie. It's a show that's garnered some raves. This might be one reason why.
  • "Word of Your Body" - The new NBC series Rise is doing the same thing that Fox's Gleedid: release singles of songs performed on the show. Here's one that's a cover from Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater's Spring Awakening.
  • Unmasked - To coincide with the release of Andrew Lloyd Webber's memoir (which also goes by this title) and in celebration of his 70th birthday (March 22), Universal Music is releasing this four-disc set featuring some of the most acclaimed performances of his songs, along with a swell array of new interpretations. (A two-disc set is also available.)
  • Calendar Girls - This musical, based on the 2003 movie of the same name, has been delighting audiences in the U.K. for a while now. We can finally hear what they've been enjoying thanks to this just-out cast recording.
  • Working - This 1978 show based on Studs Terkel's interviews with regular folks about their jobs sounds utterly of the moment on this new London cast recording. You'll find all of your old favorites here and a couple of terrific new numbers.
  • Ernest Shackleton Loves Me - Lyricist Valerie Vigoda and composer Brendan Milburn have turned out yet another inventive score, this time for a tuner about a sleep-deprived mom who designs video games and late one night gets a visit from the noted (and long-dead) Antarctic explorer. It's a delightful show and album.

I'm going to be traveling for the rest of June and most of July, so there will be a corresponding sabbatical for me in terms of updating BwayTunes. Dodgy WiFi will make big changes to the site difficult at best.

While I won't be sending you a newsletter for a while, I will be keeping new releases up to date on the homepage, and I hope to offer up a couple of free song downloads during this temporary break as well.

Enjoy the beginning of summer, and to send you on your way I suggest a listen to some tracks from Noël Coward's Sail Away, including "The Passenger's Always Right" and "Why Do the Wrong People Travel?"


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