Star Chats: Josh's Back
February 9, 2007
In the UK Josh Groban is primarily known as the voice behind one of the most inspiring songs of the last decade 'You Raise Me Up'.
Yet the 25-year-old musician has so many more strings to his bow. With the release of his forthcoming third album 'Awake'- which debuted at Number 2 in the US - plus the single 'February Song' (released January 29), Josh is poised to repeat his incredible US success here in the UK.
The follow-up to his previous two LPs 'Josh Groban' and 'Closer', which collectively sold over 13m copies, 'Awake' reflects a more 'hands-on' approach in the shape of several Groban-penned/produced songs, plus contributions from Imogen Heap, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Dave Matthews and Herbie Hancock.
The album's impressive 13 tracks show the Grammy nominated performer's tremendous growth as an artist, producer, songwriter and vocalist since he first appeared on the musical landscape.
"I learned from touring that my fans are really open-minded, musical,intelligent people and I feel like they want to come on this journey with me. I starting working on this album with a goal of creating music and finding the right people to help me create it.
"The music still sounds like it's coming from my heart and my soul and my voice. And indeed it is. That is always the most important thing," Josh says.
With a line-up of stellar producers including Marius DeVries, Guy Sigsworth, Glen Ballard and David Foster, the album contains songs in Italian, Spanish and, of course, English.
An early stand out track 'February Song' - with Josh on keyboards - came to the Los Angeles native on a sleepless night. "I wanted to write a song that melodically and lyrically represented the craziness I felt in that moment of such dark space. I walked over to the piano and it just came to me within half an hour in the most magical way."
Additionally, Groban recorded a suite of two stunningly haunting songs where he harmonises with long-term idols Ladysmith Black Mambazo. The first is the Josh Groban/Dave Matthews penned 'Lullaby', while the second is a South African song called 'Weeping', which he first heard on a trip there
"The musical tapestry of the country and their heated history, the honour of meeting Nelson Mandela and visiting schools in Soweto was totally inspiring.
"And it was a dream of a lifetime for me to sing with Ladysmith in the studio. I've loved them from the moment I heard Paul Simon's 'Graceland'". Other standout cuts include the final song of the CD 'Machine' with a special solo performance by jazz great Herbie Hancock.
Josh Groban burst onto the international music spotlight in 2001 with the release of his self-titled, debut LP, which included the hit single 'To Where You Are'. His follow-up 'Closer' - featuring the smash-hit 'You Raise Me Up' - brought enormous success to the young singing sensation, taking Josh beyond - way beyond - the one-hit wonder barrier.
Josh Groban's new album, 'Awake', is released on January 29th on Warner. A tour for 2007 will be announced shortly.