New Live BD Completes Sedaka’s U.K. Concert Experience

Courtesy:  Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Vision

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Vision

The newly released Blu-ray release of Neil Sedaka’s The Song Goes On: Live at the Royal Albert Hall is an excellent companion piece to its CD companion released in 2012.  The Blu-ray completes the concert experience started with the double-disc CD release in question.  It does so by giving audiences the visual recording that they otherwise had not had until now.  And Sedaka’s fans will most definitely appreciate getting to not just hear but see him perform so many of his hits.  The experience is completed not just through the main performance, but also through the bonus interview included with the new Blu-ray release of this concert.  The interview sees Sedaka sitting down one-on-one with fellow songwriter Paul Gambaccini.  The pair discusses Sedaka’s music, his career, and his influence in their in-depth interview.  It’s both insightful and entertaining as the men make their way through many of the songs featured in the main performance.  The main performance and the bonus interview do so much to make this new release a completion for fans of Neil Sedaka that had been hoping for a video companion to the already released CD recording of his performance from the U.K.  One can’t look at this new release (or any live release) without examining said performance’s audio and video mix.  Those charged with manning the boards both for the concert and for the final product put the finishing touch here on what is one more expert live recording from Eagle Rock Entertainment and Eagle Vision.

The Blu-ray companion to the audio release of Sedaka’s live performance from the Royal Albert Hall completes the concert experience started last year.  That’s because it is a video recording, and not just an audio recording.  Instead of just hearing the performance, audiences get the full effect of the concert with this presentation.  It allows viewers that were not there to make a full emotional connection both with Sedaka and with those that were in attendance for the taping.  One prime example of that ability to connect lies in Sedaka’s performance of ‘I Go Ape.’  The excitement and energy on Sedaka’s face as he channels Jerry Lee Lewis can be felt even just watching at home.  By direct contrast, the emotional depth of ‘The Hungry Years’ is sure to move even the strongest person to tears.  That’s thanks again to being able to not just hear the motion in Sedaka’s voice, but also to see it in his face.  One can tell that he really felt the music and the lyrics as he sang.  These are just a pair of examples of how the show’s recording makes this concert experience complete.  There are plenty more songs from which fans will be able to choose.  They’ll be able to do so when they pick up this new Blu-ray themselves.

The main performance included in Neil Sedaka’s new live Blu-ray is the main component of what makes the entire concert experience complete.  There is more to consider in what makes it complete, though.  Audiences will also appreciate the bonus interview between Sedaka and his songwriter friend Paul Gambaccini.  The in-depth interview sees the pair discussing Sedaka’s own career, his music, and his influence on today’s pop music culture.  Through the course of the interview, the pair shares some laughs when they bring up Sedaka’s history with Carol King.  There’s also a humorous moment shared in the discussion over the song, ‘Stairway to Heaven.’  Sedaka laughs as Gambaccini asks him wouldn’t he love to have Led Zeppelin’s royalty checks for the song, even though they are two entirely different songs.  That in itself raises another interesting discussion topic in the inability of songwriters to copyright song titles.  Apparently, songs themselves can have a copyright, but not a song title.  There is also a discussion on whether Neil would have the hungry years or the successful years.  This is one of the more insightful moments shared by Sedaka in his interview, and will definitely have audiences thinking.  Again, these moments and the interview as a whole collectively make the interview between the old friends make for one more way this Blu-ray makes Sedaka’s live performance from the Royal Albert Hall complete.

Sedaka’s live performance at the U.K.’s Royal Albert Hall is a complete experience now thanks to the main performance and the bonus interview between Sedaka and friend Paul Gambaccini.  There is still one more factor that fans and audiences should consider in the concert experience presented here.  That factor is the show’s audio and video mix.  Those charged with balancing both the audio and video are to be commended for the job that they did with the recording.  This applies both to the original live recording and the final post-produced product.  The audio and video presented here are just as impressive as any recording released by Eagle Rock Entertainment and Eagle Vision.  Those with a surround sound home theater system will appreciate the mix just as much as those without one.  From the high notes to the low notes and everything in between, every song is crystal clear both in terms of its video and audio.  Along with the main performance and the bonus interview it brings everything full circle and makes this one more top notch live recording from Eagle Rock Entertainment and Eagle Vision.  It is available now in stores and online.  More information on this and other releases from Eagle Rock and Eagle Vision is available online at http://www.eagle-rock.com and http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Sedaka’s Live Show Is A Simple, Beautiful Set

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Records

Neil Sedaka’s newly released live CD, “The Show Goes On:  Live at the Royal Albert Hall” is musical simplicity at its finest.  This companion CD to the musical legend’s DVD release of the same performance has been six years in the making.  Being that this performance has already been released via DVD, and now on CD, it makes one wonder if it will eventually see a blu-ray re-issue.  Until then, at least audiences have this wonderful audio record of a performance that is simple.  The simplicity of the performance makes the show fun and makes his classic hits that much more beautiful. 

Sedaka’s performance was simply him and his piano.  There was no band.  There was no pyro.  Nothing.  It’s proof positive that the old k.i.s.s. formula does work.  His vocals, and his ability on the keys, shows why he is just as respected as fellow pianist/vocalists Billy Joel and Elton John, if not even more so.  The show’s opener, ‘The Other Side of Me’ is a beautiful, gentle piece that shows Sedaka’s control of both his vocal instrument and his piano.  The dynamic contrasts throughout the piece make it flow with such ease.  The emotions of the song are perfectly expressed through those dynamic contrasts.  It pulls the audience right in.  And the airiness of the sound thanks to the size of the Royal Albert Hall makes the emotion of the song echo throughout the building.  That in itself gives the song that much more power.

Another wonderful moment from this recorded performance comes in the classic, ‘Love Will Keep Us Together.’  Sedaka explains to the audience in attendance how he came to write the classic song.  His interaction with the audience as it collectively claps to the music exhibits a chemistry between everyone involved that makes the song that much more enjoyable.  Listeners won’t be able to hold back the laughs as he talks about he writes songs, from developing a melody to experimenting with vocals and more.  His lighthearted delivery makes this such a fun song.  Of course, the song itself is just as fun as his interaction with the audience as he performs.

“The Show Goes On:  Live At The Royal Albert Hall” is loaded with great moments for any Neil Sedaka fan.  The set list is comprised of twenty-one total songs.  So it would be impossible to touch on each and every one.  But there is at least one more memorable moment in this performance.  Being that it is such a classic, what Neil Sedaka show would be complete without the one and only ‘Calendar Girl.’  Sedaka shows why the piano is considered a percussion instrument in many circles.  The way that he plays it is what really gives the song its identity, believe it or not.  His vocals match that style, too.  It combines to make just one more of what proves to be a great listen for any oldies fan.

Some people have commented on the “airy-ness” of the performance’s audio.  Given, the Royal Albert Hall isn’t a small building.  But that “airy-ness” is part of what makes this show so spectacular.  This show is just Neil and a piano.  The manner in which his vocals and his music echo throughout the hall add so much to the show’s simplicity.  It’s one more bonus to what is a great show simply from the set list.  But keeping that in mind, one can only hope that it will eventually see a blu-ray re-issue.  Audiences will appreciate the concert that much more seeing the dichotomy of how simple Sedaka’s stage set was versus the size of the hall.  That visual image alone makes it all that much more powerful.  Until then, audiences at least have this new audio recording of Sedaka’s show.  “The Show Goes On:  Live At The Royal Albert Hall” is available in stores and online now.  It can be ordered online at http://www.eagle-rock.com.

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