Page 1 of 1

Yasmin Levy - Sentir

PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 6:28 pm
by Charlie
Jamie Renton reviews this in the new fRoots and is eventually disappointed with the combination of the Israeli songstress (I never used that word before, and I must stress Jamie does not even now) and the flamenco lounge sensibilities of producer Javier Limon.

I too was disappointed at first, but find the album works very well backwards, if you can figure out a way to play it in reverse. Maybe it has made a difference to hear Yasmin close up in the session that goes out tomorrow night on World on 3.

I particularly like the sequence from 9 to the end - La Hija de Juan Simon, Porque, Alfonsito and Yigdal. And before them, she does well with Hallelujah (track 6) and Jaco (8).

That's six tracks with a big tick, out of 12. A good score these days.

PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 8:32 pm
by Nigel w
I'm with Charlie on this but then I am a huge fan of Javier 'Cocktail' Limon, anyway.

I'd probably go further and suggest there are more than six good tracks.

I love the piano of Sonny Pasos, especially in those superbly syncopated passages in the opener Mi Korason, on which - dare I say this - he plays with a little of the impishness of Ruben Gonzalez.

And who would have though Yasmin could reinvent Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah so convincingly and make it sound like you're hearng the song for the first time? Perhaps she connected with Cohen's Jewishness in a way that others covering the song have not. But for whatever reason, it's a transcendental interpretation, the spirit of which for some reason reminds of Buffy Sainte-Marie almost 40 years ago doing God Is Alive Magic Is Afoot (which I believe was based on a Cohen poem, or possibly a passage from his novel Beautiful Losers).

Yigdal - which is a traditional Jewish prayer - is a wonderful closer to the sequence that Charlie describes,too.

Can't wait to hear her BBC session, and I note in Charlie's post about the recording of that session that she is managed by Paul Burger.

Interesting man, whom I knew when he was head of Sony UK and Sony Europe, directing the careers of some truly appalling lowest-common-denominator/ pile 'em high and sell 'em cheap pop singers... I think he now manages a number of world music artists as well as Yasmin, and I wonder if there is a good story/interview for fRoots or Songlines in how he got from Anastacia and Celine Dion to being a serious player in world music?

Re: Yasmin Levy - Sentir

PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:34 pm
by Ian A.
Charlie wrote:I particularly like the sequence from 9 to the end - La Hija de Juan Simon, Porque, Alfonsito and Yigdal..

Porque is still the standout track for me, because not only is it Yasmin at her best, it is a duet with Eleni Vitali. This is more than just good news for Yasmin's CD: Vitali has made some fantastic records down the years (even Garth might like her on account of ticking some Roma boxes) and is held in high regard by many other Greek singers. But when we thought of getting an interview with her a few years ago I was generally warned off as - I was told - she'd gone a little . . . strange. When I linked the YouTube below in another thread recently, I hadn't spotted via some other audience uploads from the same gig that it seems to be from earlier this year, or indeed that the new album J.Version linked in the other thread http://www.charliegillett.com/phpBB2/vi ... hp?t=11851 is from the same concert (bugger, how to get that now Trehantiri has closed?!)** Maybe I should try again to set up that interview . . .

A production mole's Facebook page tells us that the Wo3 session was cocktail-cheese-on-a-stick piano free too? That's encouraging!

Oh, and on a connected matter, what does anybody else make of this new Buika CD with another Latin piano geezer? I'm afraid I didn't get beyond the first track. Steeling myself to try harder . . .

**EDIT: eBay: took 30 secs to find one. It's on its way. Will report back.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PVxOxTNwX4g[/youtube]

PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:17 am
by Charlie
Nigel w wrote: I note in Charlie's post about the recording of that session that she is managed by Paul Burger.

Interesting man, whom I knew when he was head of Sony UK and Sony Europe, directing the careers of some truly appalling lowest-common-denominator/ pile 'em high and sell 'em cheap pop singers... I think he now manages a number of world music artists as well as Yasmin, and I wonder if there is a good story/interview for fRoots or Songlines in how he got from Anastacia and Celine Dion to being a serious player in world music?

There was a fascinating moment during the session when I walked past Yasmin and Paul deep in conversation in a corridor, which I felt it was not right for me to report on, since it was private. But the gist of it was that Paul expressed the opinion that pop music is all about sex, designed to stir up emotions in the listener which are resolved at the end of the evening when, to use Paul's phrase, he sends up 'in the sack' with the his companion. Yasmin was slightly appalled by this, and protested that this could not account for Cesaria Evora's appeal. Although Paul's style is a bit brusque, old-style music business, in this case I tended to agree with him.

So yes, Nigel, it would be rewarding to talk with Paul, who was partner with Moshe Morad in the management company Soho Artists. Moshe has since gone back to live in Israel, and I think Paul inherited the roster of artists Moshe had introduced, including Yasmin.

PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:15 am
by John Crosby
Clive Davis has done a new interview with Yasmin that should be published in the SUNDAY TIMES Culture magazine on Sunday 4 October. Following her session and Radio Ping Pong on Charlie's BBC Radio 3 show last Friday, Yasmin is interviewed for 'A World In London' by DJ Ritu on BBC London on Saturday 3 October (with airplay from the new album 'Sentir' (World Village). Plus there's a whole bunch of reviews due in the coming weeks.

<img alt="Yasmin Levy" src="http://www.johncrosby.plus.com/myspacePICS/YasminALI1.jpg" align="left" hspace="5" width="324" height="216" border="0">

Photo credit: Ali Taskiran

PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 12:12 pm
by Hugh Weldon
I have loved Yasmin ever since Charlie played 'Intentalo Encontrar' a few years ago from the first album and was very impressed with her on the World on 3 show the other night - she demonstrated the same values in her record choices as she exhibits in her own performances - passion, integrity, sincerity.

However with the 'cocktail lounge' comments and some of her recent photos (like the one above, more on her myspace page) am I wrong to worry about her being pushed in a more commercial direction? If she is managed by a guy who believes that "pop music is all about sex" (which of course it is, largely) and she clearly goes a bit deeper than that (flamenco lovers sometimes call it duende) is there a risk of smoothing out, toning down as her career progresses? I know nothing about music marketing or artist management - but I do worry a little. I prefer Yasmin not raw but not overcooked either.

Re: Yasmin Levy - Sentir

PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 12:34 pm
by Charlie
Ian A. wrote:A production mole's Facebook page tells us that the Wo3 session was cocktail-cheese-on-a-stick piano free too? That's encouraging!

There was no piano, with or without cocktails. But whose Facebook page are you referring to? It would be good to post any relevant names and profiles in the relevant section here that has been mostly used for MySpace Links.

PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 1:24 pm
by John Crosby
Hugh Weldon wrote:However with the 'cocktail lounge' comments and some of her recent photos (like the one above, more on her myspace page) am I wrong to worry about her being pushed in a more commercial direction?

I've handled UK PR for Yasmin for several years now and, looking back at the various press in that time (including features in papers from the Independent to fRoots, Guardian to Songlines plus Later...With Jools TV), she has always looked great. As I'm sure Charlie will attest from his radio recording with her, Yasmin is an intelligent, beautiful woman and I don't see why she should deny that reality in her photographs. Her musical direction has been something that has grown organically as she has toured more widely but, to me, she still has the passion and integrity that Hugh mentions earlier. The new album needs to be played more than a couple of times to give up its secrets: certainly she is not simply making a 'Mano Suave' Part 2.

PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 1:42 pm
by Hugh Weldon
Thanks John, that's reassuring. Just that I noticed some new photos on myspace yesterday that were rather overcooked, as though she was auditioning for Vogue or something.

She isbeautiful, I agree. But sometimes less is more.

PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 2:06 pm
by Hugh Weldon
Just so you know what I'm getting at....

[img]<a><img%20src="http://hotlink.myspacecdn.com/images02/56/991d5bef53f4422db8c664f9103fca3e/m.jpg"%20alt="photo%20by%20Ali%20Taskiran.com"></a>[/img]

PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:20 am
by Des
I'm listening to the CD for the first time now. Hallelujah is probably ill-advised, Yasmin, but as the song progresses I'm getting more into it.

Th CD doesn't seem to deserve the slightly negative vibes I'm getting from the above reviews. Unless something awful happens in the remaining tracks, I'd say it's a lovely piece of work.

Edit: Have now listened to the CD twice - very enjoyable but it doesn't have the emotional power (at least for me) of Mano Suave.

PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 2:27 pm
by howard male
Hugh wrote -

She is beautiful, I agree. But sometimes less is more.

Just so you know what I'm getting at....


But surely that's a photo of ex-page 3 girl Linda Lusardi circa 1985 isn't it? In other words, yes, I couldn't agree more, Hugh.

It's not a case of denying Yasmin's indisputable beauty, but finding a photographer who is adept at capturing it in a cliché-free manner that doesn't drive away the kind of listener she is trying to attract.