Music: Danny Davies
Lyrics: Danny Davies, Peter Gallagher and Judy Wolfson
Reviewer: Iain Sykes
Hey Producer!, the collection of unique musical theatre and cabaret songs from composer Danny Davies and featuring a whole host of names from the West End, faces one huge problem as soon as it begins. The Julie Atherton performed title track. Not that it’s a bad song, in fact it’s quite the opposite. The sassy jazz feel and vocals demand listening to over and over again, making it difficult to move on to the rest of the CD and leaving the listener wondering if the rest of the album can live up to such a sparkling start.
Luckily it does, even if it takes a few songs to get back on track before Peter Polycarpou takes the vocals on the powerful ballad, ‘Twice the Man’ and the album carries on with quite a few songs like ‘I Need You Broadway’, written in a style heavily influenced by the songs of Jason Robert Brown. There are also hints at a larger, fuller musical style with Davies’s songs from his Elephant Man musical, Face to Face. Here these songs, such as Gemma O’Duffy’s ‘Who’s the Greater Fool’ and ‘Picture This’ performed by David Berkovitch, Alex Scott Fairley and Peter Gallagher (who, along with Judy Wolfson, also contributed additional lyrics for the CD) suggest a much richer and consistent set of musical theatre songs.
In contrast, Laura Selwood takes up the vocals in the moving, simple piano based, ‘This Dream’s Not For You’, while ‘Forgive Me’, ‘Isn’t It Strange’, ‘Turn Around’, ‘Now You’re Here’ and ‘Shadows of Evening’ bring powerful finishes to gorgeous musical theatre songs heading towards the albums climax, the joyous ‘Shine on Down’.
In Hey Producer!, Danny Davies has produced a most fine showcase of his music and his various styles in a CD that deserves to be listened to over and over again.