For his latest (tenth) studio album UK soul man SEAL offers something quite different…. well, quite different for him, that is. ‘Seal Standards’ (released on 10th November) is just that – the man’s versions of classics and standards, the fare usually associated with people like Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald!
Seal says: “This is the album I have always wanted to make. I grew up listening to music from the Rat Pack era, so recording these timeless tunes was a lifelong dream.”
So, amongst the songs on the 11 tracker are ‘Luck Be A Lady’, ‘My Funny Valentine’, ‘Love For Sale’, ‘Autumn Leaves’ and ‘Smile’ (which, coincidentally also featured on Gregory Porter’s latest album).
To add a real authenticity to his versions, Seal recorded the album at Capitol Records in LA – the same studio where Sinatra recorded many of his classics and Seal also used a coterie of session players who featured on those original hits- they include Sinatra’s piano player Randy Waldman and Ella Fitzgerald’s bassist Chuck Berghofer. Don’t, therefore, expect anything radically different. Seal and producer Nick Patrick stick close to the well-known/original arrangements of the songs; though what is intriguing is to hear Seal’s unique voice interpret things that are very familiar.
The album comes in two versions, by the way… the “standard “11 tracker and a “deluxe edition” that has 14 tracks including two Christmas songs.
SEAL; STANDARDS is released on November 10th on Decca /Virgin EMI