Album info



Label: Craft Recordings

Genre: Jazz

Subgenre: Vocal

Artist: The Manhattan Transfer

Album including Album cover

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  • 1Agua06:28
  • 2The Man I Love03:47
  • 3Paradise Within05:27
  • 4On A Little Street In Singapore04:42
  • 5The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul04:28
  • 6Twilight Zone / Twilight Tone06:20
  • 7Blues For Harry Bosch04:32
  • 8Chanson D'Amour03:35
  • 9What Goes Around, Comes Around04:57
  • 10God Only Knows05:33
  • Total Runtime49:49

Info for Fifty

Fifty years of harmony: GRAMMY award winning vocal group The Manhattan Transfer celebrate their 50th Anniversary with the new studio album "Fifty". Recorded with Germany's WDR Funkhausorchester, the album contains arrangements of some of the groups' biggest hits, combining the orchestral sounds of WDR with their trademark harmonies. Included are new versions of "Chanson D'Amour" and "The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul", plus arrangements of Artie Shaw's timeless "The Man I Love" and The Beach Boys "God Only Knows".

“After fifty years of creating and singing harmony, we would like to celebrate with our upcoming release – aptly named Fifty – and acknowledge all the joy you have brought us on our musical journey as we begin our 50th anniversary and final world tour. We look forward to seeing you!”

The album was recorded across several continents during lockdown, and came to life after the group performed a sellout show in Cologne with the WDR Funkhausorchester Köln in January 2020. Co-founder Paul writes in his liner notes, “The collaboration between the group and the symphony was such an exhilarating and enjoyable experience that we all thought it would be wonderful to do a recording project together.”

That became a greater challenge when the pandemic curtailed global travel, but under the guidance of vocal producer Dave Thomas, of Take 6, the recording was completed in stages,. A rhythm section recorded in New Jersey and Manhattan, with the symphony orchestra cutting their parts in isolated sections at the WDR studios.

“We wanted the choice of songs to somehow represent the significant transitions of our music over the span of five decades, which was a rather formidable task. What interested us was choosing material that either represented a significant moment in the group’s history, or songs that perhaps were not necessarily hits, but ones we really loved. Also, another major consideration was choosing songs that we felt would inspire and work well with the symphony because this was a collaboration.”

The group’s legacy includes 19 singles, 29 albums, ten Grammy Awards for the group and its members from 20 nominations, and induction into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame. Their music has been extensively in major films and TV shows and they’ve collaborated with such giants as Tony Bennett, Bette Midler, Smokey Robinson, Laura Nyro, Phil Collins, Take 6, B.B. King, Chaka Khan, James Taylor, Frankie Valli, Joe Zawinul, Asleep at the Wheel, Stéphane Grappelli, Bobby McFerrin, Chick Corea, and Dizzy Gillespie.

The album is a fitting tribute not only to a half-century of success and creative excellence by the “Man Tran,” but to the memory of co-founder Tim Hauser, who died in 2014. His three vocal partners, Alan Paul, Janis Siegel, and Cheryl Bentyne, were then joined in the line-up by Trist Curless.

The Manhattan Transfer
WDR Radio Orchestra Cologne

The Manhattan Transfer
remains a cornerstone for great pop and jazz hits, a legacy that the group has cemented since their first recording 41 years ago. The legendary quartet has been awarded 10 Grammy Awards of 20 nominations and has been inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame. Trist Curless has now officially become a member of the group, joining Janis Siegel. Alan Paul, Cheryl Bentyne, all of whom are conscious of maintaining the integrity and artistry left by founding member Tim Hauser who passed away in 2014.

The Manhattan Transfer was born when Tim Hauser was paying his bills by driving a New York City cab while aspiring to form a harmony vocal quartet that could authentically embrace varied musical styles, and still create something wholly unique in the field of American popular song. Through driving a taxi, he met the next members of the legendary group — Laurel Massé and Janis Siegel. Alan Paul, who was appearing in the Broadway cast of “Grease” at the time, was recommended as the additional male voice and the four became The Manhattan Transfer on October 1, 1972. Cheryl Bentyne joined The Manhattan Transfer in 1979, replacing Laurel.

In 1974 the group began performing regularly throughout New York City at Trude Heller’s, Mercer Arts Center, Max’s Kansas City, Club 82, and other cabaret venues. By the end of the year they were the number one live attraction in New York City. They were signed to Atlantic Records and released their self-titled debut in 1975. The second single, a remake of the gospel classic “Operator,” gave the group their first national hit.

1979′s Extensions earned The Transfer another smash with “Twilight Zone/Twilight Tone.” The vocal remake of the classic “Birdland” became recognized as the group’s anthem and earned them their first two Grammy Awards. In 1981, they became the first group ever to win Grammy Awards in both Pop and Jazz categories in the same year.

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