Enjoy an evening of Bacharach's many hit compositions
Like many of you, I grew up with the music of Burt Bacharach. As soon as any Bacharach song came on the radio -- whether the artist was Dionne Warwick, the Carpenters or the Beatles -- my friends and I would sing along. We couldn't resist those catchy melodies, beautiful arrangements and compelling lyrics. Bacharach has inspired decades of singers and musicians, and continues to light up our lives with beautiful songs today.
With the Honolulu Symphony Pops:
» In concert: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday
» Place: Blaisdell Concert Hall
» Tickets: $14 to $79; half off for military; 20 percent off for seniors and students.Visit Ticketmaster outlets; (877)750-4400; www.ticketmaster.com
» Call: 792-2000 or visit www.honolulusymphony.com.
His songs launched the careers of many a pop star, and there's no doubt that Bacharach and lyricist Hal David made up one of the greatest writing duos in music history. As a longtime fan of Bacharach's melodies and love songs, it's an honor to welcome him to Honolulu this weekend for two concerts with our Honolulu Symphony Pops.
Bacharach's career has produced more Grammy- and Oscar-winning songs than I can list, and you'll probably be surprised by a few of the titles.
Some of the world's most popular singers have struck gold with Bacharach's compositions: from Aretha Franklin with "I Say a Little Prayer," to Perry Como with "Magic Moments," to Dusty Springfield with "The Look of Love," to the Carpenters with "Close to You," to '80s pop stars Naked Eyes with "Always There to Remind Me."
Bacharach's work with Dionne Warwick also fashioned such classics as "Walk on By," "Message to Michael," "Promises, Promises" and "Do You Know the Way to San Jose?" And that's simply a handful of the more than 500 songs in Bacharach's repertoire.
This weekend we'll enjoy classic Bacharach -- he will conduct the Pops orchestra and play piano -- and guest vocalists will join us for a retrospective of his greatest hits.
What's more, Bacharach will introduce us to songs from his latest CD, "At This Time." Released in 2005, "At This Time" takes on political themes and features Bacharach friends, and past Honolulu Symphony Pops guest artists, Elvis Costello and Chris Botti.
Bacharach's remarkable career spans five decades. He was born in 1928 in Kansas City, Mo., and his music studies took him to McGill University in Montreal and the Mannes School of Music in New York.
In the '50s he worked as accompanist, bandleader and arranger for the legendary Marlene Dietrich (he is credited with transforming her nightclub act into an evocative concert experience). From there he went on to write hit songs for greats such as Gene Pitney ("The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance"), Johnny Mathis ("Heavenly"), the Shirelles ("Baby It's You") and country star Marty Robbins ("The Story of My Life").
It was in the '60s and '70s that Bacharach teamed with David to produce the literally hundreds of songs performed by mega-stars, including the Beatles. This era also marked their partnership with Warwick, with whom they struck gold with 22 Top 40 hits.
Bacharach's success continues. In February he will receive a Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award. It will be his seventh.
Don't miss your chance to experience the music of an American legend and enjoy some of the greatest songs ever written.
Ross Taosaka is executive director of the Oahu Choral Society.