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Before we had our two beautiful girls, my husband and I loved going to the theatre, particularly to see musicals, as often as we could. Sadly, we now have neither the time or the money to go, so I have to make do with listening to my favourite songs instead. I have quite a few CDs from musicals but one of my favourites is this CD - Performance by Marti Webb - as she sings many of my favourites from a number of different musicals.
Marti Webb was one of Andrew Lloyd Webber's leading ladies in the seventies and eighties, taking the lead in both Evita and Tell Me on a Sunday. Unsurprisingly then a lot of the songs featured are from Lloyd Webber musicals, although strangely not her big hit which was 'Take That Look of your Face', but there are songs from plenty of other musicals too. If you are a lover of the musicals there are bound to be many that you will recognise and love! This album was made in 1989 however so don't expect anything too modern!
Marti Webb has a very strong voice which means that she has a wide range in her repertoire of powerful moving songs and this is reflected on this album.
The first song is the beautiful 'I dreamed a dream' from the amazing Les Miserables. This is a very sad song by the character Fantine who finds herself in desperate circumstances with a daughter out of wedlock and forced to work as a prostitute. It's a beautiful song and a very moving way to strt the album.
Things get a bit more upbeat when she moves into 'It's almost like being in love' which comes from Brigadoon a musical I don't actually know. It's another lovely song though and one I often find myself singing along to. Next is that very famous song 'Music of the Night' from Phantom of the Opera. Although most people will associate the song with Michael Crawford it does work just as well with Marti's strong voice.
'Losing my Mind' from Follies comes next. Again, this is another very moving song and it's worth listening to the lyrics as they will almost have you in tears! The next four songs are all from Lloyd Webber musicals. Two from Aspects of Love are' Anything but Lonely' and 'Love changes everything'. Both are very melodious and again listen to the lyrics to really get a sense of the story. 'Only He' from Starlight Express is a gorgeous song too. It's a beautiful ballard telling of a very strong love. One of the most famous songs on the album has to be 'Memory' from the musical Cats. Elaine Paige originally made this one famous. It is sung by the character Grisabella who is no longer her once glamourous self. It is a very poignant number and Marti Webb sings it wonderfully.
You also get to hear 'Once you lose your heart' from Me and my Girl, 'Blow, Gabriel, Blow' from Anything Goes and 'In one of my weaker moments' from Budgie. All three are great songs as well.
Marti Webb sings two songs from what was probably 'her show' - Tell me on a Sunday. This is a fabulous musical which only has one character on stage the whole time. She is an English girl living in the US with a disasterous love life. Through a number of songs she chronicles all of the ups and downs she has had with men. 'The Last man in my life' is part of this story but the better one is the song 'Tell me on a Sunday' This is a beautiful song where the character thinks of all the better ways there are to be told that a relationship is over, like going to a park or a zoo, but always to be told on a Sunday please!
I've left mentioning my favourite song until last which come from La Cage Aux Folles and is called 'I am What I am'. This is a song I love to sing along too and I am often moved to tears as I am doing so. It's interesting that this song is performed on stage by a gay man yet a woman is singing it here. I don't think it matters because it is the words and message that is so important about accepting people for who or what they are!
Overall, my personal opinion is that this album is great. There are a mixture of songs from so many musicals that as you listen you are transported to so many different stories and places. there are a mixture of tracks too from some very upbeat lively ones to slower more thoughtful ones and some real tear jerkers!
At the moment this Album can be found on Amazon for only £4.97.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
2 I Dreamed A Dream
3 Almost Like Being In Love
4 Music Of The Night
5 Losing My Mind
6 Anything But Lonely
7 Only He
8 Memory (Cats)
9 Love Changes Everything (Aspects Of Love)
10 Once You Lose Your Heart
11 Last Man In My Life
12 I Am What I Am
13 In One Of My Weaker Moments
14 Tell Me On A Sunday
15 Blow Gabriel Blow