Your basket is empty

Categories :

Similar artists

Albums

From
CD$15.49

Pop - Released May 21, 2002 | Rhino - Warner Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
On his third studio album, Randy Newman found a middle ground between the heavily orchestrated pop of his debut and the more stripped-down, rock-oriented approach of 12 Songs, and managed to bring new strength to both sides of his musical personality in the process. The title track, which Newman has described as a sort of commercial jingle written for slave traders looking to recruit naïve Africans, and "Old Man," in which an elderly man is rejected with feigned compassion by his son, were set to Newman's most evocative arrangements to date and rank with the most intelligent and effective use of a large ensemble by anyone in pop music. On the other end of the scale, "Last Night I Had a Dream" and "You Can Leave Your Hat On" are lean, potent mid-tempo rock tunes, the former featuring some slashing and ominous slide guitar from Ry Cooder, and the latter a witty and willfully perverse bit of erotic absurdity that later became a hit for Joe Cocker (who sounded as if he took the joke at face value). Elsewhere, Newman cynically ponders the perils of a stardom he would never achieve ("Lonely at the Top," originally written for Frank Sinatra), offers a broad and amusing bit of political satire ("Political Science"), and concludes with one of the most bitter rants against religion that anyone committed to vinyl prior to the punk era ("God's Song [That's Why I Love Mankind]"). Whether he's writing for three pieces or 30, Newman makes superb use of the sounds available to him, and his vocals are the model of making the most of a limited instrument. Overall, Sail Away is one of Newman's finest works, musically adventurous and displaying a lyrical subtlety that would begin to fade in his subsequent works. © Mark Deming /TiVo
From
CD$15.49

Pop - Released February 11, 2003 | Rhino - Warner Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Randy Newman's songwriting often walks a narrow line between intelligent satire and willful cruelty, and that line was never finer than on the album Good Old Boys. Newman had long displayed a fascination with the American South, and Good Old Boys was a song cycle where he gave free reign to his most imaginative (and venomous) thoughts on the subject. The album's scabrous opening cut, "Rednecks," is guaranteed to offend practically anyone with its tale of a slow-witted, willfully (and proudly) ignorant Southerner obsessed with "keeping the n-----s down." "A Wedding in Cherokee County" is more polite but hardly less mean-spirited, in which an impotent hick marries a circus freak; if the song's melody and arrangement weren't so skillful, it would be hard to imagine anyone bothering with this musical geek show. But elsewhere, Good Old Boys displays a very real compassion for the blighted history of the South, leavened with a knowing wit. "Birmingham" is a funny but humane tale of working-class Alabamians, "Louisiana 1927" and "Kingfish" are intelligent and powerfully evocative tales of the deep South in the depths of the Great Depression, and "Rollin'" is cheerful on the surface and troubling to anyone willing to look beneath it. Musically, Newman dives deep into his influences in Southern soul and also adds potent country accents (with the help of Al Perkins pedal-steel guitar) while dressing up his songs in typically expert string and horn arrangements. And Newman assumes each character, either brave or foolish, with the skill of a gifted actor, giving even his most loathsome characters enough depth that they're human beings, despite their flaws. Good Old Boys is one of Newman's finest albums; it's also one of his most provocative and infuriating, and that's probably just the way he wanted it. © Mark Deming /TiVo
From
HI-RES$41.49
CD$35.99

Pop - Released December 16, 2016 | Nonesuch

Hi-Res Booklet
From
CD$12.99

Pop - Released June 30, 1975 | Warner Records

From
CD$12.99

Pop - Released September 23, 1977 | Warner Records

After Good Old Boys, one of the most ambitious and thematically unified albums of his career, Randy Newman seemed to beat a willful retreat for his next project, 1977's Little Criminals. For the most part abandoning the carefully structured orchestral arrangements that dominated Good Old Boys and Sail Away, Newman cut Little Criminals with a handful of pop-friendly session musicians and L.A. Mellow Mafia regulars (including most of the Eagles), and his arch, cutting satire gave way to a lighter but less thoughtful tone, with the humor becoming less mean-spirited (though becoming much more venomous than "Rednecks" might have been difficult). Newman even revisited one of his favorite themes, the pointlessness of racial prejudice, with a metaphor so silly no one could fail to understand it. Or at least that's what he thought when he wrote "Short People"; the song unexpectedly took off as a novelty hit, and the vertically challenged across the country began attacking Newman for what they saw as an affront to their dignity and well-being. As a result, Little Criminals became Newman's first (and only) gold album in the United States, but this set wasn't an especially good way to introduce the average record buyer to his work. Little Criminals lacks the scope of Newman's best work, the music is skillful but bland, and several of the songs sound like padding (especially "You Can't Fool the Fat Man" and "Jolly Coppers on Parade"). While the title tune, "Rider in the Rain," "In Germany Before the War," and "Sigmund Freud's Impersonation of Albert Einstein in America" (which was written for the movie Ragtime but not used) are fine songs, much of Little Criminals sounds like Newman was treading water; it's not his worst album, but it sounds like the work of a man figuring out what his next move should be. © Mark Deming /TiVo
From
CD$12.99

Pop - Released January 12, 1983 | Warner Records

Randy Newman began the slow process of transforming himself into a polished L.A. song-crafter on the album Little Criminals, and with Trouble in Paradise the metamorphosis was complete; by this time, Newman could make a record just as ear-pleasing as anything Paul Simon, Don Henley, or Lindsey Buckingham could come up with, and proved it by persuading all three to appear on the sessions. But no matter how polished the arrangements and smooth the production, Newman's songs don't sound like they're ready for radio, and he's too bright not to understand that songs about apartheid, self-pitying white bluesmen, and arrogant yuppies are poor prospects for the pop charts. Trouble in Paradise marked the high point of Newman's struggle between pop sheen and his satiric impulses, and the album is a significant improvement over Little Criminals and Born Again. The targets of Newman's satirical gaze are easy to skewer, and his pen is hardly subtle, but the overall tone is more respectful than on Born Again and the results are stronger. The bitter Afrikaner in "Christmas in Capetown" and the egocentric blowhard in "My Life Is Good" have at least earned Newman's disgust, and while many of the character studies ("Mikey," "I'm Different") and vignettes ("Miami," "Take Me Back") take a less than charitable view of their protagonists, like the losers and half-wits that populate Good Old Boys, they're human beings whose flaws reveal a hint of tragedy. And the closing number, "Song for the Dead," is a stunner in which a soldier explains to the bodies he's burying the purpose behind the war that took their lives. While too slick for Newman's core audience, Trouble in Paradise was his most intelligent and best realized work since Good Old Boys, and his finest album of the 1980s. © Mark Deming /TiVo
From
HI-RES$29.99
CD$25.49

Film Soundtracks - Released August 21, 2015 | Walt Disney Records

Hi-Res Booklet
From
CD$13.99

Film Soundtracks - Released January 1, 2001 | Walt Disney Records

As with both of the Toy Story movies and A Bug's Life, the soundtrack to Disney/Pixar's Monsters, Inc. features a fun, whimsical score by Randy Newman. Bookending lively, big band-inspired pieces like the Monsters, Inc. theme are two versions of "If I Didn't Have You," one sung by Billy Crystal and John Goodman, who voice the film's main characters, Mike (the little green eyeball) and Sulley (the big, blue, vaguely Maurice Sendak-iancreature), and one sung by Newman. For all its charm, it can't help but sound a bit like a second-rate version of Toy Story's "You've Got a Friend in Me," but it's still a winning song. The rest of the score is charming and vaguely retro, particularly on the sprightly "Walk to Work" and "Sulley and Mike"; even spookily named pieces like "The Scare Floor" and "The Scream Extractor" sound more cute than creepy. While this album probably won't appeal to most kids, it's nice that Disney acknowledges the huge adult following that Pixar's films have by releasing this playful, detailed score. © TiVo
From
CD$12.99

Pop - Released September 27, 1988 | Warner Records

From
HI-RES$14.99
CD$12.99

Pop - Released August 5, 2008 | Nonesuch

Hi-Res Booklet
From
HI-RES$17.99
CD$14.99

Film Soundtracks - Released June 21, 2019 | Walt Disney Records

Hi-Res
From
HI-RES$14.99
CD$12.99

Pop - Released August 4, 2017 | Nonesuch

Hi-Res Booklet
With Donald Trump as President and an increasingly topsy-turvy planet, Randy Newman’s comeback after nine years of absolute silence was eagerly awaited… Much like Cole Porter in the second half of the 20th century, this 73-year-old musician from California has always managed to combine causticity with emotion, portraits of rare accuracy and atypical frescoes. Most importantly Randy Newman created a style of his own. In Dark Matter the genius of the author of Rednecks, Short People, Old Man, Sail Away, Political Science and I Love L.A. is intact. In beautiful arrangements (strings are never out of the picture for him) he derides religion, creationists and even Vladimir Putin. Further on he imagines a conversation between the Kennedy brothers during the Bay of Pigs crisis and evokes the tragic life of Sonny Boy Williamson, a bluesman who had his name stolen by a peer after being murdered… Once again Randy Newman displays an impressive sense of staging in his songs. Whether theatrical, openly jazzy or more blues-ey, his score always remains timeless. When gifted with such originality, there's no need to reinvent the wheel! Simply staying true to himself is enough. And he brilliantly does just that throughout this Dark Matter album, imposing its status of perfect work on each new listen. © MZ/Qobuz
From
CD$7.49

Pop - Released January 1, 1999 | Universal Music Mexico

Newman's first collection of pop songs since 1988's Land of Dreams finds him as satirically biting as ever, yet unafraid to tackle personal and heartfelt concerns. Few are out of harm's way when Newman's at the keyboard: Old rock stars get it in "I'm Dead (But I Don't Know It)," dirty old men in "Shame" and "The World Isn't Fair," and cultural imperialism in "The Great Nations of Europe." In addition, there's perhaps one of his most beautiful and personal songs yet, "I Miss You," and even a schmaltzy one, "Every Time It Rains." The production team of Mitchell Froom and Tchad Blake ensure that there are no missteps by maintaining a timeless, orchestrated sound with original instrumentation. Doubters who thought Newman lost his edge after dozens of blockbuster movies needn't worry anymore -- few of these songs would find their way onto the smiley soundtracks, yet all of them should rest comfortably alongside his other four-star offerings. © Denise Sullivan /TiVo
From
CD$15.49

Film Soundtracks - Released March 29, 2005 | Rhino - Warner Records

Randy Newman was the nephew of film composers Alfred, Emil, and Lionel Newman, which would suggest at least some familiarity with the field, even though he had only scored one minor movie (Cold Turkey). And in his songs, heard on his series of solo albums, he displayed far more knowledge of popular music styles of the early 20th century than any of his singer/songwriter peers. Listening to his records, you could always tell that he knew his way around Scott Joplin's rags. Who better, therefore, than Newman to make his debut as a big-budget film composer by scoring an adaptation of E.L. Doctorow's novel Ragtime? So must movie producer Dino DeLaurentiis have reasoned in giving Newman the assignment. And the result worked out quite well. Newman naturally re-created much of the cakewalking Tin Pan Alley style of the turn-of-the-century era depicted in the film, but he actually had a more challenging assignment than might have appeared, since the story moves from one social stratum to another and ranges in tone from the comic to the melodramatic to the tragic. Especially impressive is the three-part "Dénouement," which brings the plot strands together. On this soundtrack album, billed as "music from the motion picture plus additional music," one gets to hear several vocal numbers in addition to the instrumental cues. A period song, "I Could Love a Million Girls," sung by Donald O'Connor, gives a sense of frivolity; "One More Hour," sung by Jennifer Warnes and, like the score, nominated for an Oscar, has a drawing-room formality; and Newman himself is heard singing "Change Your Way" (which was not in the film), the sort of song that would be at home on any of his solo albums. The 2002 reissue adds Newman's demo of the "Ragtime Theme." © TiVo
From
CD$16.49

Pop - Released August 19, 2003 | Nonesuch

Between 1977 and 1988, Randy Newman seemed bound and determined to prove he could be a pop star, which is no small task when your voice is froggy, wear glasses, and your favorite themes are racism and insensitivity. While Newman managed to make some very good albums during that span of time -- most notably 1983's Trouble in Paradise -- his desire to wrap a harsh message in a pretty package didn't always serve his art especially well, with one side seemingly compromising the other. But Newman's late-career success as a composer of film scores (complete with an Oscar) seems to have satiated his desire for fame and fortune, and he's been willing to take on a less cluttered approach in his own recordings. 1999's Bad Love was the leanest and most direct Newman album since Sail Away in 1972, and in 2003 he revisited his back catalog with The Randy Newman Songbook, Vol. 1. Here, Newman sits at the piano and, with no other accompaniment, sings 15 songs he wrote between 1966 and 1999 (and plays short extracts from three his film scores), and the simplicity of this presentation makes this a superb showcase for the intelligence, grace, and craft of Newman's songs. There's plenty of venom in Newman's humor, but more than a little compassion as well, and he doesn't pick easy or simple targets. Here Newman does a masterful job of portraying his rogues' gallery, from a cynical God ("God's Song [That's Why I Love Mankind]") and a pathetic would-be ladies' man ("You Can Leave Your Hat On") to a slave trader looking to convince Africans to give up their freedom ("Sail Away") and a casually genocidal world leader ("Political Science"), and in each performance he makes his characters sound sadly, hilariously human and easily recognizable. And while there's little flash in Newman's piano style, the easy elegance and understated New Orleans roll of his touch at the keyboard is at once beautifully subtle and subtly beautiful. There isn't much to The Randy Newman Songbook, Vol. 1 -- just a guy playing piano and singing his songs -- but it's just enough to make you laugh, wince, and almost cry; it's the work of one of the few people in pop music who merits the description "genius," and it's a remarkable summation of his singular talent. © Mark Deming /TiVo
From
CD$12.99

Pop - Released January 1, 1970 | Reprise

From
CD$18.99

Pop - Released February 11, 2003 | Rhino - Warner Records

Randy Newman's songwriting often walks a narrow line between intelligent satire and willful cruelty, and that line was never finer than on the album Good Old Boys. Newman had long displayed a fascination with the American South, and Good Old Boys was a song cycle where he gave free reign to his most imaginative (and venomous) thoughts on the subject. The album's scabrous opening cut, "Rednecks," is guaranteed to offend practically anyone with its tale of a slow-witted, willfully (and proudly) ignorant Southerner obsessed with "keeping the n-----s down." "A Wedding in Cherokee County" is more polite but hardly less mean-spirited, in which an impotent hick marries a circus freak; if the song's melody and arrangement weren't so skillful, it would be hard to imagine anyone bothering with this musical geek show. But elsewhere, Good Old Boys displays a very real compassion for the blighted history of the South, leavened with a knowing wit. "Birmingham" is a funny but humane tale of working-class Alabamians, "Louisiana 1927" and "Kingfish" are intelligent and powerfully evocative tales of the deep South in the depths of the Great Depression, and "Rollin'" is cheerful on the surface and troubling to anyone willing to look beneath it. Musically, Newman dives deep into his influences in Southern soul and also adds potent country accents (with the help of Al Perkins pedal-steel guitar) while dressing up his songs in typically expert string and horn arrangements. And Newman assumes each character, either brave or foolish, with the skill of a gifted actor, giving even his most loathsome characters enough depth that they're human beings, despite their flaws. Good Old Boys is one of Newman's finest albums; it's also one of his most provocative and infuriating, and that's probably just the way he wanted it. © Mark Deming /TiVo
From
HI-RES$17.99
CD$15.49

Pop - Released September 23, 2016 | Nonesuch

Hi-Res Booklet

Film Soundtracks - Released August 9, 2019 | Walt Disney Records

Download not available
From
CD$8.99

Film Soundtracks - Released November 8, 2019 | Lakeshore Records