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Marcus Simone - The Truth About…

   Marcus Simeone is one of those rare vocalists who actually seems to be creating a song as he sings it. This is easily realized at the top by his simple, melancholic opening cut, “Long Time To Cry,” written with Tracy Stark. The CD is book-ended with another classic original, “Lullaby” written with Charles Rice. Throughout this album of deeply compelling and intimate songs he collaborates with some extraordinary contemporary songwriters and musicians on great arrangements of story songs that serve a purpose; to share a journeyman's truth about a life and that journey – his journey.

   This multi-award winner with the 5-octave, pitch perfect voice has produced his fourth CD on the Miranda Music label. Lilting cuts include a riveting duet with sultry singing star and touring partner Tanya Holt (with whom he recently paired with on shows in New York City and New England resulting in rave reviews - including the New York Times. Their soaring harmonies bring new life to Jimmy Webb's riveting “Beyond Myself.” Marcus also interprets two achingly beautiful covers of an early Bee Gees' haunting rarity, “I Started A Joke”and John Prine's moving “Hello In There” giving a tender nod to forgotten faces in the crowd. A pop/rock version of Motown's Berry Gordon/Janie Bradford's “Money” is knocked out of the park here. Same goes with a full-throttle orchestration on the hot Latin-infused dynamo, “Fair Enough.” As on his other albums, the versatility of songs displays his well-known ability to comfortably sing in all genres. With an emphasis on pop/soul, The Truth About... is his most personal album to date and reflects milestones from his life.

   On several cuts, he invited some of today's rising songwriters to sit in and accompany him on their original songs such as award winners Tim DiPasqua (“You”), Brett Kristofferson (“Things That Haunt Me”) and Heather Sullivan (“Autumn Rains.”) Music director-arranger/songwriter Tracy Stark shines at the keys on the reflective ballad“Camera.

   Other unique treats include: a passionate “Cold Enough To Snow”(Allan Menkin-Stephen Schwartz), an emotional “End Of the World” (Mybe/St. Louis/Williams/Angelo), a powerful “I Had This Man” (Wakefeld/Smith) as well as “What About Love?” (Russell/Willis/Bray), Ashford and Simpson's “I Ain't Been Licked” and his stunning original, “Lullaby”- another duet with Tanya Holt that is rapturously beautiful.

   This electrifying CD potpourri of gems bursts with Marcus Simeone's unique, gentle and powerful mix of highly charged, emotional songs through use of his expressive tenor, flawless phrasing and lyrical gymnastics that ultimately tell a simple story of one who has faced, conquered and interprets life through his own eyes as only he can in a voice that has been likened to several truth-tellers in song such as Johnny Mathis, Luther Vandross and Michael Jackson.

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