From Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, – Frank Shiner is a man of many means which have taken him through everything from law studies to acting in over sixty play and television productions. His latest album is entitled; Lonely Town, Lonely Street – an album of great covers he does justice to in his own right, which has also garnered seven Grammy Considerations.
He also has a Christmas song currently out that’s playing in Macy’s, Bloomindales and Kohls this holiday season, both of which feature in this review, starting with his rendition of “Please Come Home For Christmas,” the 1960 classic by Charles Brown. Also featured on the album is award winning female vocalist Leslie Mendelson.
This can be classified as Pop, but it comes out more on the Adult-Contemporary- Blue eyed soul side. Shiner puts his own stamp on it without simply doing a carbon copy, and that takes more risk on a holiday tune for sure, but he works out with a truly soulful twist, and the sax solo tops it off with just the right touch of jazz.
He managed to record a world class cover and put his own special sauce on it. I can hear this being just as fit for radio as the shopping stores playing it this season, no question about it. He delivers with a maximum effort to seamlessly smooth out a traditional track, backed by musical perfection.
Lonely Town, Lonely Street kicks off with his take on “How Can I Be Sure” by The Young Rascals, and the first thing noticed is how much he makes a track his own without losing a step on the song in the process. In-fact he adds so much of his own character to it that you don’t think much about comparing it to the original, instead you feel like it extends the original somehow, and that’s not easy to do, but Shiner nails it.
This fine rendition is followed-by an amazing studio performance of Donny Hathaway’s cover of “I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know.” This is another amazing cover with Shiner matching Hathaway’s top notes.
Frank Shiner Highlights His Voice With Great Covers
Anyone partaking in this album is in for a ride indeed, with covers like the epic Hall & Oats hit “She’s Gone” with its bluesy version giving it something to write home about. He does stick a little bit to the original, but you can tell it’s a matter of respect to such a big hit that everyone knows. But everyone also knows how good Hall’s singing voice is too.
Once again, Shiner magically works it out without going too far to change a classic. He keeps it coming all the same with a sweet version of Joe White penned “Rainy Night In Georgia” and then some smoking blues guitar is featured on Randy Newman’s “Guilty.”
“Lonely Town, Lonely Street” is where Frank Shiner and Bill Withers meet with jubilance on the title track which puts the Shiner stamp on this R&B cut with the utmost care in preserving it while adding the-right little spin. The whole album is a sensational experience to behold, with more covers turning out great new takes.
“Drink You Away” by Justin Timberlake is another example, which actually-put me onto the original song which I had never heard. That’s just some of the magic Shiner weaves throughout these transplanted roots. It comes recommended along with the Christmas track, for all to appreciate.
Keep up with more news and music from Frank Shiner on his WEBSITE.