The Jim Brickman Show
Interview with Barry Manilow
Jim Brickman talks with legendary singer, songwriter & performer Barry Manilow about his new album "This is My Town" and upcoming tour
Jim Brickman - You're hanging out with me Jim Brickman on The Jim Brickman Show and you know there are rarely times when I get really excited about a guest being on the show, but this is one of them. I get to talk with my friend Barry Manilow. How you doing Barry?
Barry Manilow - Good Jim! Good to talk with you.
Jim Brickman - Very, very happy to talk with you. You know I've always been such a huge fan of your music and so, so much of your songwriting and producing. And I'm excited because you've got a brand new album This is My Town that is a love letter to New York, songs of New York.
Barry Manilow - Yeah, you know I'm a New Yorker, I was born and raised in New York and when you are born and raised in New York it never leaves you. Even though I've lived in California more years than I was in New York, I still always feel like I'm a New Yorker - I talk fast, I walk fast, I think fast - and whenever I get back to New York it always feels like coming home.
JB - What is it about Brooklyn that has so many amazingly talented people that come from there?
BM - Yeah I think we all wanted to get out of Brooklyn.
JB - But maybe you know getting a chance though to be across the river, and be able to discover all the different facets of New York and different style of music, that must have been an amazing influence.
BM - Yeah it wasn't just the music, it was the excitement. And you know I was raised by a family of immigrants and they were great people. They gave me my sense of humor, they gave me my decency, the neighborhood was filled with great people and most of all New Yorkers will not take anybody lying or not telling the truth or being truthful. That really helped me going into the music business, you know New Yorkers just won't put up with it. Plus when you get into trouble you want a New Yorker standing next to you. They'll run into the building that's burning and not away from it, that's the kind of people they are. So I'm proud to be able to say I come from New York.
Keep Scrolling for Part 2 of Barry Manilow's Interview
Jim Brickman - It's The Jim Brickman Show and I'm so excited to be talking with Barry Manilow this weekend. Barry's brand new album covers some New York songs and some originals.
Barry Manilow - Right it's half originals and half standards. And as you know, and as I discovered, when I looked up the list of standards that were written about New York, there must have been a hundred great songs that were written about New York by some of the greatest songwriters. And that took the longest, to try to figure out which 5 I could put on this album because 5 were going to be originals and 5 were going to be standards.
JB - One of my favorites on the album is the medley. There's a medley of New York songs that has "New York State of Mind" in it and "New York, New York," "On the Town" and "I'll Take Manhattan." Every time you transitioned into another song I was excited to hear you do them.
BM - Well see now you're a musician, of course you're gonna go for that because that's a real musician's kind of medley. You know to string them all together and they do sound effortless and it builds to the big New York song, which is Kander & Ebb's "New York, New York." I had a feeling you'd connect with that one.
JB - Absolutely love it. Ten new Barry Manilow studio recordings and then the songs are divided between some of your originals and standards. And in your original compositions, there's sort of a nod - stylistically everything just sounds so beautiful together.
BM - This album is filled with all sorts of different styles now, just like New York. New York is a melting pot of different styles. And now you can listen to this album and get different styles. There's pop stuff, jazz stuff, there's Broadway stuff - just like if you visited New York.
JB - The brand new album from Barry Manilow is called This is My Town: The Songs of New York. You've got to check it out, really fantastic. Thanks a lot for hanging with us Barry, it's great to hear your voice.
BM - You too, Jim. I'll speak to you soon.
More On Music Legend Barry Manilow
Having sold more than 85 million albums worldwide, Barry Manilow is one of the world's all-time bestselling recording artists. He's had an astonishing 50 Top 40 singles including 12 #1s and 27 Top 10 hits and is ranked at the #1 Adult Contemporary Artist of all-time, according to Billboard and R&R magazines.
Further, he has been nominated for a Grammy Award in every decade since the 1970s and, in addition to winning the Best Pop Male Vocal Performance Grammy in 1979 (for "Copacabana"), is an Emmy, Tony and American Music Award winner three years in a row. Barry Manilow was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002 and has his own Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 1978, five of his albums were on the best-seller charts simultaneously. For more Barry Manilow visit http://www.manilow.com, like Barry on Facebook or follow him on Twitter.