NATALIE DOUGLAS celebrates new album "BACK TO THE GARDEN" with concert at BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB, 2/26
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 02:13 pm EST 02/09/24

CLUB44 RECORDS

PRESENTS

THE NEW ALBUM FROM CELEBRATED CHANTEUSE

NATALIE DOUGLAS

“BACK TO THE GARDEN”

DUE ON CD, DIGITAL AND STREAMING FORMATS

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 23

NYC RELEASE CONCERT AT BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 26

CLUB44 RECORDS is pleased to announce Back to the Garden – the new album from acclaimed chanteuse Natalie Douglas – will be available on CD and streaming and digital formats on Friday, February 23. She will celebrate the recording with a special concert at Birdland Jazz Club, her musical home in New York, on Monday, February 26. Tickets are available HERE . She also has concert dates scheduled in Florida, California, London, and beyond. Full details are at NatalieDouglas.com. Back to the Garden is produced by Wayne Haun, with Joel Lindsey and Sharon Terrell serving as executive producers. Orchestrations are by Wayne Haun, with Joel Mott providing big band arrangements. Pre-save the album at c44.lnk.to/BackToTheGarden

Back to the Garden is a potent mix of golden age standards, pop gems of the Woodstock generation, and special surprises. Highlights include a vivacious big band arrangement of the Cole Porter classic “Begin the Beguine;” a tender, lilting version on the ballad “You’ll Never Know,” with a sensuous string arrangement; a charming jazz age take on the Kern, Hammerstein and Harbach gem “Who?;” and a driving rock-inspired interpretation of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock.”

The emotional centerpiece of the album is “Love Is the Power That Heals Me,” a soaring anthem written just for Natalie by Club44 label co-founders Wayne Haun and Joel Lindsey. “The lyrics feel so very me,” Natalie reflects. “This song is brand new and sounds completely 21st century, but it has some of that mid-century flavor that I first heard in my parents’ record collection. I will always be an unabashed fan of clear, full-throated singing and direct, romantic lyrics.”

The album’s buried treasure is “He Lives in a World of His Own,” a majestic song with the seductive build of a vintage James Bond theme, written by Lionel Bart, the Tony Award-winning creator of the stage musical Oliver! Natalie discovered it while researching her tribute to the iconic Dame Shirley Bassey. Bart wrote this as special material for Bassey’s audition for Oliver!’s tragic heroine, Nancy. Even though the role ultimately went to to Georgia Brown, history has left us with this showstopper for Natalie to unearth.

“When I am researching my tribute shows,” she says, “I know certain hits need to be included for each artist. And yet I always want to find deep cuts – brilliant songs that mostly uber fans would know. This particular one was never included on any album, it only appeared on a rare acetate demo from 1966. I am honored to be presenting it on this album.”

“I was obviously a dramatic child,” Nataliecontinues. “So anything from Dame Shirley was right up my alley! I adore this selection because our modern sensibility often doesn’t allow this kind of straightforward, non-ironic love song. But humans still feel this way, so why shouldn’t we sing about it? I love a light touch too, for certain numbers, but sometimes I just want a full throttle, go for broke, no holds barred kind of drama. This song and the arrangement give me just that!”

“Trust in Me” originates from the beloved Disney movie The Jungle Book. “I was obsessed with The Jungle Book as a child!,” Natalie recalls. “I swear I drove my parents batty singing the songs incessantly! When it came time to create this album, I couldn’t resist the chance to take ‘Trust in Me’ in a whole different direction. I love how the lyric promises safety and comfort, but the music lets you know there’s an undercurrent of danger. That’s what brings out the sex in this song – even though it’s meant for children. Genius!”

Natalie’s version of “Work Song” is an homage to Nina Simone, whom she previously honored with a full album. “Nina is my inspiration in all things,” she comments. “She was brilliant, ferocious, resilient, utter genius, so I’ll never tire of singing her material. I was all in when Wayne suggested re-recording this, which I first sang on the 2005 recording of my Nina Simone show at Birdland. I will always love that live performance – we had such a blast! And now it makes me so happy to re-record a brass-centric version of this song all these years later.”

Back to the Garden closes with her heartfelt rendition of “True Colors,” popularized by Cyndi Lauper in the ‘80s. “This song means so much to those of us who’ve felt unseen or unwelcome in this world,” Natalie concludes. “Cyndi Lauper is that fusion of artist and activist that is vital to creative life. The world has made progress in the almost 40 years since this song came out, but there are forces working overtime to return us to the Dark Ages, when anyone not straight, not white, not cis or not gentile, wasn’t truly safe or fully a citizen. It feels important to record our version of this song right now.”

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Natalie expressed her excitement about becoming a part of the Club44 Records family, “I couldn’t be more thrilled to join forces with the team at Club44 in making a brand-new record. After hearing such great things from so many of my label mates, many of whom are longtime friends, I’m not surprised to find everyone at the label is as kind and delightful as they are talented. Just wait till you hear what we’re cooking up!”

Award-winning producer Wayne Haun is at the helm of this project. Wayne shared, “I first discovered the music of Natalie Douglas while browsing the CD section at Colony Music. I’m a big fan of Nina Simone, and Natalie had recorded a tribute to Nina at Birdland. I had to have the recording, and it did not disappoint! From there, I discovered her other music and became a big fan. I even planned a New Year’s Eve trip to New York just to see her perform live. I had always hoped for an opportunity to produce her and never thought it would happen, so to say this is a dream come true is not a cliché. It’s a very true and very cool reality.”

A&R Director Joel Lindsey chimed in, “Natalie epitomizes the caliber of artist we at Club44 desire to partner with. Her musicality and range are impressive, but her integrity and showmanship separate her from most singers out there. This is a very special record, and I’m so happy to share this music with the world!”

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NATALIE DOUGLAS is a 21st century vocalist with a strong foundation in the traditional pop vocals of the American Songbook and an equally fierce devotion to the modern jazz, blues, rock, and country influences of her childhood. Like her idol Nina Simone, the singer is drawn to lyrics that tell a compelling story no matter what genre. She is a thirteen-time MAC, two-time Backstage Bistro, Margaret Whiting Award, and Donald F. Smith Award winner. Natalie travels the world with her legendary tribute shows, paying homage to some of the greatest singers of our time, such as Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, Dolly Parton, Joni Mitchell, Roberta Flack, and more. She has performed over 75 concerts at her home base, the legendary Birdland Jazz Club in New York City, where her picture hangs on the iconic Birdland Wall of Fame. She is an expert instructor for the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, the Sullivan Foundation, and the Mabel Mercer Foundation, where she is also Education Director. She can be seen currently in the award-winning documentary, Sloane: A Jazz Singer, commemorating one of her heroes, Carol Sloane, in domestic and international film festivals. www.NatalieDouglas.com.

CLUB44 RECORDS – based in the Music City of Nashville, Tennessee – is an independent label which aims to highlight the Broadway, cabaret and jazz genres, preserve the American Songbook and provide a home for artists who represent this timeless music. Following their premiere studio release, Christmas at Birdland, the label has presented Love Notes, the latest album from Tony Award and Golden Globe winner Linda Lavin; Billy’s Place from Grammy Award winner Billy Stritch; Act One from rising vocal star Nicolas King; Jane Monheit’s Come What May, which celebrates the international Billboard #1 pop/jazz vocalist’s 20th anniversary as a recording artist; Carol Sloane’s Live at Birdland, an intimate set captured at the legendary venue; rising Broadway star Julie Benko and husband Jason Yeager’s Hand in Hand, an assortment of beloved songs; Christine Ebersole’s After the Ball, a collection of songs reflecting on life, love and family; and Merry Christmas, Darling, the debut holiday collection from Tony Award winner Stephanie J. Block. Club44 Records also serves as the creative home of many other singers, instrumentalists and writers. All releases are distributed to digital and retail outlets worldwide via The Orchard/Sony Music. For more information, visit www.Club44Records.com

Natalie Douglas – Back to the Garden – Track List

1) Begin the Beguine (Cole Porter)

2) The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (Ewan MacColl)

3) Woodstock (Joni Mitchell)

4) Let It Be Me (Gilbert Bécaud / Pierre Delanoë / Manny Kurtz)

5) Who? (Jerome Kern / Oscar Hammerstein / Otto Harbach)

6) Trust In Me (Robert B. Sherman / Richard M. Sherman)

7) Love Is the Power That Heals Me (Joel Lindsey / Wayne Haun)

8) Work Song (Nat Adderley & Oscar Brown, Jr.)

9) You’ll Never Know (Harry Warren / Mack Gordon)

10) He Lives in a World of His Own (Lionel Bart)

11) True Colors (Billy E. Steinberg / Thomas F. Kelly)
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