Neal McCoy has an embarrassment of riches in his fall and winter schedule, with two recording projects due beginning this month and rolling out through January 2012.
In November, DPTV Media, the multi-million dollar entertainment label of WTVS Detroit Public Television, will release a concert CD and DVD collaboration pairing McCoy and his band with the iconic Les Brown Jr. and His Band of Renown. “Music of Your Life with Les Brown Jr. and His Band of Renown, Starring Neal McCoy, and Special Guests Charley Pride and Janie Fricke” includes many of Neal McCoy’s Top 10 hits and American Songbook standards. A 13-song CD and 21-song DVD are due 11/8/2011, and will be available through traditional, online and digital outlets across North America.
Also due from McCoy in January 2012: After eleven albums, over twenty-five charted singles, and countless fans across the nation, McCoy will be releasing his highly-anticipated studio album, ‘XII’. The new collection of twelve songs, produced by Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton and Brent Rowan, marks McCoy’s 12th studio album, and his first with new label home, Blaster Records. McCoy’s first single from “XII”, “A-OK,” penned by Barry Dean, Luke Laird and Brett Eldredge, will be released in October 2011.
McCoy, twice named Entertainer of the Year by the fan-voted TNN/Music City News Awards, says of his different upcoming releases, “My DPTV project with Les Brown gave me the opportunity to do something I always wanted to do, sing with horns and a Big Band. And I’d like to do more of that. Having Miranda and Blake involved in ‘XII’, the first project at my new label, Blaster Records, is huge for me. Not only do they have great vision, but they know when to have fun and when to get serious along with being fantastic musicians. I’m so excited about everything that’s coming up.”
The DPTV Media project has roots in McCoy’s earliest years, when he started out singing standards with a small jazz band in Texas. “Sentimental Journey,” a huge hit for Les Brown’s Band of Renown (the band Les Brown Sr. founded in the 1930’s as Les Brown and His Blue Devils), was a favorite of McCoy’s. When Brown and McCoy met in Branson, where Brown lives and hosts his syndicated radio show on the “Music of Your Life” Network, Brown was tickled to know the song, written by Les Brown Sr., Bud Green and Benjamin Homer, was in McCoy’s repertoire.
McCoy says, “I grew up on pop music and Great American Songbook, and I love melody and good phrasing in whatever I’m singin’. As I established my cred in country, I started putting songs like ‘Sentimental Journey’ and ‘I’ve Grown Accustomed to Her Face,’ back in the shows. People love the old songs because it’s just great writing all around.”
McCoy and Brown also share a strong connection to the USO. McCoy frequently entertains U.S. and allied troops around the world, as did Les Brown Sr. in his many USO shows with Bob Hope. To date, McCoy has performed seven concerts in Iraq, two in Afghanistan, along with shows in Pakistan, Germany and Bosnia, on ships in the Persian Gulf and military bases all over the states. In the DPTV Media show, McCoy and Brown pay tribute to our military men and women with the song, “I’m Your Biggest Fan” to a great crowd reaction.
DPTV Media, in its maverick fashion, pulled the trigger quickly on the project. “I’m a big Neal McCoy fan,” says Jamie Westrick, Executive Producer of DPTV Media. “Les Brown and Neal McCoy have created something very unique. We’re proud to be a part of it, and to be sharing it on PBS stations through DPTV Media.”
DPTV is the only PBS licensee in the country – and the first of its kind – with its own entertainment label, DPTV Media. DPTV Media was the #1 Billboard Top World label in 2004. DPTV Media is distributed throughout North America by eOne Entertainment. Executive Producers for this project are Jamie Westrick and Les Brown Jr., with Josette Marano serving as TV producer, and Keith Olsen and Les Brown Jr. as music producers.
The 60-minute DPTV Media concert special delivers a mix of many of McCoy’s Top 10 Country hits plus several standards, all with the backing of the 20+ piece orchestra (including McCoy’s band with each player featured throughout the show). Added to the performance roster are singer Janie Fricke, who discovered Neal McCoy, and Charley Pride, who signed McCoy to his first record deal. Fricke and McCoy team on “It’s a Cheating Situation.” Pride and McCoy duet on “You’re My Jamaica”.
Posted by: Sam Moore