Singer Phyllis Nelson recorded the dance classic "I Like You" on Carrere Records. It was a huge dance hit for the Philadelphia vocalist, charting number 65 R&B in late 1985. "Move Closer" and "Don't Stop the Train," among others. Her son, Marc Nelson, was a pre-stardom member of Boyz II Men, had a 1991 number 26 R&B hit with "I Want You," and had a 1999 Columbia album, Chocolate Mood.
In the fashion of bands like Boz Scaggs, this album runs the gamut from soft rock to rockers to the etherial. With great musicians behind him (especially the very underrated Richie Zito) Marc Tanner has put out a classic album that hardly anybody has ever heard or even heard of.
This recording presents–almost–Berlioz's original thoughts on this very complicated opera (which went through more than a dozen versions, with additions and subtractions, in the composer's lifetime), although conductor John Nelson also adds an aria or two Berlioz later added, making it somewhat different from the version recorded by Philips under Sir Colin Davis a little over 30 years ago. If I had to choose one of these two superb performances, it would be this: the opera's odd rhythms are more strongly underlined by Nelson, the whole work seems more lively, and the comic moments are genuinely funny. And the singing is superb, with Patrizia Ciofi a simply great, light-toned Teresa, Gregory Kunde tackling the title role and singing as impressively as Gedda did for Davis, and Joyce di Donato singing Ascanio's music as well as you'll ever hear it. The darker-voiced roles are equally well taken, with Laurent Naouri's Balducci particularly vivid. The orchestral playing, choral singing, and ensemble work and sonics are first rate. This is a superb recording, presenting Berlioz's odd masterwork brilliantly.
Robert Levine for amazon.com