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Raul Malo

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By Esther Lynn

On Friday, November 10th, 2009 Boulder Station will present Raul Malo in the Railhead. Music-lovers may remember Malo as the lead singer/songwriter of The Mavericks. Combining traditional country with traditional rock 'n' roll, The Mavericks became one of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful groups of the early '90s.

Formed in Florida in the late '80s, the band played rock clubs around the Miami area and built a strong and loyal local following. The group began touring and recorded a number of albums - Hell to Paradise in 1992, What a Crying Shame in 1994 (which eventually went platinum with its title track reaching the Top 40). O What a Thrill and There Goes My Heart both made the Top 20. The Mavericks won a Grammy and two Country Music Association awards as Top Vocal Group, before going on hiatus for several years.

In 2001, Malo released a solo album. In 2003, the group re-assembled and recorded a self-titled set for Sanctuary Records. A live album and DVD, recorded in Austin, Texas, on the group's subsequent tour, was released in the fall of 2004.

As for Raul Malo, not only has he made his mark in the country music world, he has established himself in the Latin, Jazz and Rock ní Roll markets as well. In July, he released his newest solo album, Youíre Only Lonely. To quote Don McLeese from the Amazon Web site, "As the frontman for the Mavericks and a member of Los Super Seven, Raul Malo has applied his Orbison-like delivery to an eclectic array of material. On this, his latest solo effort, the warbler enlists veteran producer Peter Asher to focus on romantic balladry, as string-laden arrangements surround Malo's tremulous voice on the opening title track (a '70s hit for songwriter J.D. Souther) and the soaring Feels Like Home (reprised as the closer in a duet with Martina McBride). The song selection highlights Malo's vocal range, as he finds the bittersweet essence in a slowed-down rendition of the Everly Brothers' So Sad, a dramatic reading of the Bee Gees' Run to Me, and a lilting take on Ron Sexsmith's Secret Heart. He even tackles Etta James's signature tune, At Last, its jazzy, smoky sophistication punctuated by a trumpet solo. The cover of Willie Nelson's Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground provides the album's main link to country, but even here the bedrock organ and soul choir sound closer to the church than the roadhouse. The stellar selection provides a superb showcase for Malo's shimmering voice." Also included on Maloís most recent CD are Games That Lovers Play, For You, Tomorrow Night and Remember.

In People magazine's August 14th, 2006, issue, Criticís Choice gave Maloís Youíre Only Lonely four stars and stated "This intensely romantic CD showcases his haunting vocals on an eclectic mix of covers..." The Los Angeles Times music writer wrote, "[An album] dedicated to resurrecting the kind of romantic pop music that Frank Sinatra long personified. This is all about setting the mood for candlelight, champagne and a cozy evening with the one you love - or wish to." "Anyone in search of sophisticated make-out music should snag Malo's album, posthaste: You're Only Lonely is a perfect disc to break out (along with a bottle of red wine) once the kids are tucked into bed and fast asleep." declared the Washington Post, while MSNBC says it's "A beautiful record, through and through. If you donít like it, youíre a bad person." The St. Petersburg Times calls it "The best make-out album of the year. Music for lovers only." Other music critics say things like "This is turn down the lights music, serious baby-making stuff," "Easily the most romantic album of the year," "A mood-setting, smooch-inducing date album," "A handsome set of ballad covers...for your listening and dining pleasure. Burnished and refined...verging on operatic," and "Reminiscent of Frank Sinatra's classic late-night albums (think In the Wee Small Hours). Glorious."

Take someone you love and check out Raul Malo.

Raul Malo
Boulder Station - Railhead
Friday, November 10, 2009 8:00 pm
Tickets $9.99 plus tax
Call (702) 547-5300 or (866) 264-1818

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