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Frank. Deluxe Edition
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Performer Notes
  • Personnel: Amy Winehouse (vocals, guitar); Jimmy Hogarth (guitar, drums, percussion, programming); Earl "Chinna" Smith , Jeremy Shaw, Ian Barter, Femi Temowo (guitar); Vincent Henry (flute, alto flute, clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone); Roger Aadon, Robert Aaron (flute, saxophone); Derek Nash, Lisa Grahame, Phil Veacock, Teodross Avery (saxophone); Bruce Purse (trumpet, bass trumpet, flugelhorn, baritone horn); Stefan Skarbek, Matt Rowe (trumpet, background vocals); Chris Storr, Jason McDermid, Jon Scott, Ben Edwards , Tanya Darby (trumpet); Stafford Hunter, Roger Goslyn, Rico Rodriguez, Winston Rollins (trombone); Martin Slattery (horns, Wurlitzer organ); Timothy Hutton (horns); Lenny Underwood, Luke "Lukvatine" Smith, Luke Smith (piano, keyboards); Jason Rebello, Jools Holland (piano); Donovan Jackson (Fender Rhodes piano, organ, keyboards); John Adams (Fender Rhodes piano, organ); Salaam "The Chameleon" Rami (organ, electric bass, drums, percussion, music box); Christopher Holland (organ); MJ Cole (keyboards); Commissioner Gordon (drums, percussion, programming, turntables); Gilson Lavis, Errol Campbell (drums, percussion); Troy Auxilly-Wilson, Nathan Allen , Stuart Anning, Jeremy Stacey, Willburn "Squidley" Cole, Richard Wilkinson (drums); Rudy Bird (shaker, percussion); Gordon Williams (percussion); Felix Howard, Jenni Fujita (background vocals).
  • Audio Mixers: Commissioner Gordon; Tom Elmhirst; Matt Lord; Gary Noble; Jimmy Hogarth; Cameron Craig.
  • Audio Remixers: Salaam "The Chameleon" Rami; MJ Cole; Seiji.
  • Liner Note Author: Paul Flynn.
  • Recording information: Creative Space, Miami, FL; EMI Music Publishing Studios, London, England; Headquarters, NJ; Mayfair Studios, London, England; Platinum Sound studios, New York, NY; The Headquarters, NJ.
  • Author: Amy Winehouse.
  • Photographer: Valerie Phillips.
  • Arranger: Salaam "The Chameleon" Rami.
  • If a series of unfortunate comparisons (like the ones to follow) cause listeners to equate British vocalist Amy Winehouse with Macy Gray, it's only natural. Both come on like a hybrid of Billie Holiday and Lauryn Hill who's had a tipple and then attempted one more late-night set at a supper club than they should have. Despite her boozy persona and loose-limbed delivery, though, Winehouse is an excellent vocalist possessing both power and subtlety, the latter an increasingly rare commodity among contemporary female vocalists (whether jazz or R&B). What lifts her above Macy Gray is the fact that her music and her career haven't been marketed within an inch of their life. Instead of Gray's stale studio accompaniments, Winehouse has talented musicians playing loose charts behind her with room for a few solos. Instead of a series of vocal mellifluities programmed to digital perfection, Winehouse's record has the feeling of being allowed to grow on its own -- without being meddled with and fussed over (and losing its soul in the process). Simply hearing Winehouse vamp for a few minutes over some Brazilian guitar lines on "You Sent Me Flying" is a rare and immense pleasure. Also, like Nellie McKay (but unlike nearly all of her contemporaries), Winehouse songs like "Fuck Me Pumps," "Take the Box," and "I Heard Love Is Blind" cast a cool, critical gaze over the music scene, over the dating scene, and even over the singer herself. With "In My Bed," she even proves she can do a commercial R&B production, and a club version of "Moody's Mood for Love" not only solidifies her jazz credentials but proves she can survive in the age of Massive Attack. [A greatly expanded version of Frank released in 2008 added four demos, the B-sides "Around Midnight" and "Fools Gold," six tracks recorded live or in session, and remixes including the Frank songs "F**k Me Pumps" (by MJ Cole), "Take the Box" (by Seiji), and "Stronger Than Me" by Mark Pritchard's Harmonic 33 project.] ~ John Bush
Professional Reviews
Entertainment Weekly (p.79) - "[The album] bristles with intelligence....On this jazzier debut, she's closer to Sade..." -- Grade: A-
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