Oct 192014
 

 from TRACKS OF MY YEARS

written by Brian Wilson & Tony Asher

In 1985, David Foster and Bryan Adams first collaborated on the famous charity song, “Tears Are Not Enough.” These two Canadian treasures would later touch base when Adams sang on Foster’s 1991 ” River Of Love ” cd and when Adams and Barbra Streisand sang together on the 1996 “I Finally Found Someone,” a duet produced by Foster. Fast forward to a couple of years ago. Foster approached the legendary rocker with a project he thought would be perfect for his friend. The idea was to record a bunch of covers of hits from the sixties and the seventies, songs that Adams loved back in his teenage years.

The initially reluctant superstar eventually agreed and their work on “Tracks Of My Years” started. It took three months of sessions spread over two years to give life to the “Tracks Of My Years” cd. The tunes were released on Foster’s Verve Records label just a few weeks ago. After a careful listen, we can’t help but agree with Foster’s concept. Adams is in exceptional vocal form, his voice shining throughout the material that includes hits by The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles, Chuck Berry, Smokey Robinson and many more. The arrangements are stripped down to cleverly leave the focus on Adams ‘ trademark rocking voice. Similarly, Foster produced the effort with an unusual restrained hand that works extremely well with the classic pop/rock material included here. “Tracks Of My Years” is split between catchy rockers and effective ballads that are all perfectly crafted by Foster, Adams, Bob Rock and their team. The instrumental parts are mostly performed by the singer and his band with Foster guesting on piano and keys and session ace Michael Thompson playing on guitar.

Among the many gems on “Tracks Of My Years,” we have picked “God Only Knows” as the Song of the Week. The feel-good Beach Boys masterpiece is reinvented by Adams and Foster as an intimate piano/voice ballad, very emotional with some beautiful guitar licks from Thompson. Adams ‘ intense vocal performance is nothing short of sublime while being backed up by the Hitman’s tender piano playing. Adams stated that Foster wasn’t really into covering this song, but he quickly changed Foster’s mind when the rocker suggested a rework that was inspired by the milestone Tony Bennett/Bill Evans collaboration. The late Evans, a giant of jazz piano, was one of Foster’s main influence and Evans’ inspiration was probably the key element to achieve this gorgeous rendition of “God Only Knows.”

“Tracks Of My Years” zoomed to #1 on the Canadian charts and debuted at #11 in the UK . Strangely enough, it was met with lukewarm reception in the US , yet its superior quality should eventually make it gain momentum and improve sales. Let’s add that this cd is the best showcase of Foster’s rock side since those classic Tubes albums in the eighties. Do yourself a favor. Buy “Tracks Of My Years.” It’s chock-full of legendary hits that are given a different twist. This cd has fantastic vocal and instrumental work and priceless musical value.


Listen

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Lead Vocals: Bryan Adams

Piano: David Foster
Electric Guitars: Michael Thompson
Programming: Jochem van der Saag
Produced by David Foster & Bryan Adams


Lyrics

I may not always love you
But long as there are stars above you
You never need to doubt it
I’ll make you so sure about it

God only knows what I’d be without you

If you should ever leave me
Though life would still go on believe me
The world could show nothing to me
So what good would living do me

God only knows what I’d be without you

God only knows what I’d be without you

If you should ever leave me
Well life would still go on believe me
The world could show nothing to me
So what good would living do me

God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you