RELEASE
May 20, 2003
LABEL
Gray Cat
GENRES
Pop/Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, American Popular Song, Adult Contemporary, Torch Songs, Vocal Pop, Traditional Pop

Album Review

Apparently, old rock singers who have exhausted their commercial appeal and have sung all the pop and soul standards have but one place to turn -- the American popular songbook. Linda Ronstadt pioneered this move in the '80s, Rod Stewart picked it up at the turn of the century, and, now no longer at Virgin, Boz Scaggs picks up the torch with 2003's But Beautiful, a ten-track trawl through standards like "What's New?," "How Long Has This Been Going On?," and "Sophisticated Lady." It should be no surprise that Scaggs is not deliberately following Stewart's footsteps -- in his liner notes, he says his old friend Jimmy Pierre initiated the project years ago with a list of songs he thought Boz should sing, and then pianist/arranger Paul Nagel later encouraged him to begin this project -- but it can't help but feel that way, given the number of old rockers turning to the music their parents loved. Scaggs, thankfully, doesn't take the lush, orchestrated route, choosing to record with a small quartet featuring Nagel, saxophonist Eric Crystal, bassist John Shifflett, and drummer Jason Lewis. They have a nice, late-night feel -- nothing adventurous, but well-done -- and Scaggs is appropriately laid-back, which doesn't necessarily mean that he's well-suited for this material. His off-hand phrasing sometimes is too casual and he delivers the tunes predictably, never finding a way to make these much-heard songs sound fresh. That doesn't mean this sounds bad, because it doesn't; it's an entirely pleasant listen. But even longtime Boz Scaggs fans may not find a reason to spin this more than once.
Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. What's New?http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fbut-beautiful-jazz-standards%252Fid4285174%253Fuo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  2. Never Let Me Gohttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fnever-let-me-go%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285156%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  3. How Long Has This Been Going On?http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fhow-long-has-this-been-going-on%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285158%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  4. Sophisticated Ladyhttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fsophisticated-lady%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285160%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  5. But Beautifulhttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fbut-beautiful%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285162%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  6. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewilderedhttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fbewitched-bothered-bewildered%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285164%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  7. Easy Livinghttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Feasy-living%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285166%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  8. I Should Carehttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fi-should-care%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285168%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  9. You Don't Know What Love Ishttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Fyou-dont-know-what-love-is%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285170%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
  10. For All We Knowhttp://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/stat?id=GPa6cpPdL08&offerid=162397&type=3&subid=0&tmpid=3664&u1=EI000000004300000004070010074436&RD_PARM1=http%253A%252F%252Fitunes.apple.com%252Falbum%252Ffor-all-we-know%252Fid4285174%253Fi%253D4285172%2526uo%253D5%2526s%253D143455
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