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Showing 1-10 of 82 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 89 reviews
on December 7, 2012
Brian Stokes Mitchell, whom I have seen in Kiss Me, Kate, Man of La Mancha, and the Encores! production of Kismet, as well as in concert with Martin Short and the Pittsburgh Pops conducted by the late Marvin Hamlisch, proves once and for all that he is the heir to the Broadway musical leading-man tradition established by such legends as Alfred Drake, John Raitt (Bonnie's father), Howard Keel, and Gordon MacRae. Accompanied only by the sympathetic pianist Tedd Firth, Mitchell guides his audience through a collection of show tunes ranging from the Gershwins' "It Ain't Necessarily So" (from Porgy and Bess) to Boublil, Kretzmer, and Schonberg's "Stars" (from Les Miserables), with a particularly climactic version of the "Soliloquy" from Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel. On Lerner and Loewe's "How to Handle a Woman" (from Camelot), Mitchell pays tribute to Richard Burton and Richard Harris, both of whom portrayed King Arthur to great distinction, and suggests that he could easily fill their shoes in a future production. Mitchell reprises two selections from productions in which he has starred: Man of La Mancha's "The Impossible Dream", and "Some Enchanted Evening" from South Pacific, in which he appeared in a Carnegie Hall concert version in 2005. This introspective Broadway tour ends on a subdued note with Leonard Bernstein's "Some Other Time" from On the Town, in which Mitchell adapts Betty Comden and Adolph Green's lyrics to "Haven't sung half the songs I want to," and hopefully this hints at more to come from this Broadway titan.
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on November 8, 2012
I've been on the edge of my keyboard waiting for this album ever since his wonderful 2006 release. Stokes internalizes songs and brings them to life. To hear this album, one would think they had discovered a series of brief one-man musicals - each song delivered so strong as to make you believe in the role portrayed. It's also worth mentioning Stokes has mentioned the inspiration for the album arose from the Bill Evans/Tony Bennett recordings also notable for the sparce combination piano and voice. In every way, Stokes has exceeded the expectations that such a comparision suggests. Stunning!
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on November 5, 2012
Mr. Mitchell's new CD Simply Broadway is anything but simple! Yes, it's one piano, one voice. It's songs you've heard before but not in this way. As is his custom, this is an artist who always stretches, always finding fresh, new ways to interpret what you thought was familiar. With his inimitable delivery Stokes molds each tune as would a sculptor. I particularly like his interpretation of What Kind of Fool Am I. I typically think of Sammy Davis Junior when I hear it, but with Mr. Mitchell's interpretation I learned a lot that was new!

Run, don't walk to get several copies! And, now your Holiday gift list has just been made easier!
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on December 9, 2012
Nah. Mr. Stokes doesn't perform the beautiful ballad mentioned in my headline. But he really should. In fact, he should perform every ballad ever written for the Broadway musical stage. Until he does, this album certainly will suffice, which indeed it does most magnificently. "Sorry Grateful" (from Sondheim's "Company") literally brought a tear to my eye, and is the standout performance on this outstanding album IMHO. But the other songs are equally beautiful, each in its own way. Mr. Stokes has a fantastic and beautiful voice, and it's always a pleasure to hear him perform, whatever the medium.
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on December 13, 2012
This by far the most outstanding recording I've heard from a singer in years - Babs notwithstanding! Each selection is presented with Stokes' trademark voice and what is referred to as 'vocal stylings'. Stokes doesn't just ride the music, he moves through it like a dancer. The interpretations of each song - both vocally and pianistically, a true dialog here - are individual jewels. Ranging from utmost tenderness [How to Handle a Woman] through wry humor [Ain't Necessarily So; If I Were a Rich Man] through subtle, deeper spins on the classics [Some Enchanted Evening; What Kind of Fool Am I] to more contemporary views [Finishing the Hat; Sorry Grateful] - the album is packed with memorable and addictive performances. Particularly enticing is listening to these tunes for the nuances from both performers in interpreting the material, and the dialog between them. Even if you're sure these classics are stale for you, give a listen and be prepared to smile - grin even - and maybe quietly bask in the sunshine of this offering.
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on May 6, 2014
I never heard of the man until I saw an interview on Fox network. Being a fan of Broadway music, I listened to the interview with a little music samples. I decided to buy and download the MP3 album to listen to on my way to work.

The man has a fantastic baritone voice. Not quite operatic, but great for Broadway. BUT, his interpretations are over the top. A bit tedious for listening to music that I know very well, but doesn't always sound like the music I am familiar with.

I am not saying it is bad in any way, but it will be a while before I listen to it again. Maybe if I watched him singing while acting out on the stage, it would be more fitting.
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on October 11, 2013
I recently played Brian Stokes Mitchell's second album Simply Broadway and the results were simply fantastic! I downloaded this album back in the spring or summer of this year and I knew what I was getting with "Stokes", as he is called. I have his first album as well as the new Broadway soundtrack of Man of La Mancha in which he stars with Mary Elizabeth Mastantonio and Ernie Sabella-equally great albums.
I don't have a favorite song on this album as they are all great.If I were you, I'd get this album as soon as possible because you are missing out on the best of Broadway music...thanks Amazon you've done it again!Simply Broadway
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on November 19, 2013
This is the album I hoped Brian Stokes Mitchell would release. With his mellifluous baritone he delves into his Broadway history and puts his own spin on classics and some less-familiar pieces. He moves from tender to sassy with ease. The arrangements are simple and lush and his accompianist is brilliant.
Take a bow and give us more.
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on July 11, 2013
Brian Stokes Mitchell has one of the best voices on Broadway and I never miss a live performance when he appears locally. I expected this album to be terrific but didn't find it at all satisfying mainly because of the choice of material. To me, it didn't suit his voice. Some albums you listen to the first time and think how great they are This one I thought was just OK and put it away never having the desire to hear it again. Maybe it takes getting used to.
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on August 5, 2013
Jonathan Schwartz has been playing this album on his NPR show for months and calls it the best album of the year. Hip hop and rock aficionados may not agree, but then Simply Broadway isn't for them. (And shows like Rock of Ages, Motown, and Let It Be really aren't musical comedies.) Broadway veteran Mitchell sings these show tunes accompanied only by a piano and for the most part sings them in the role for which they were originally written. If this is your kind of music, don't hesitate. Buy it.
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