Interviews no image

Published on February 16th, 1995 | by Gerry Galipault

0

The Manhattan Transfer are ‘Tonin’ up

Tim Hauser would just as soon forget about The Manhattan Transfer’s two-album sojourn with Columbia Records.

With the just-released “Tonin’ ” LP, featuring cover versions of ’50s and ’60s classics, the multi-Grammy Award-winning vocal group is back on Atlantic, where they reigned for 13 years.

For Hauser, it’s as if they never left.

“We were never unhappy (at Atlantic), in terms of the way we were treated,” he said recently from his home in Studio City, Calif. “Columbia just offered us what we thought was a great deal, and it turned out to be a nightmare. It was strictly a business thing.

“After the dream turned into a nightmare at Columbia, Atlantic wanted us to come back, and we were fortunate enough to get out and come back.”

When asked who they wanted to produce their “Tonin’ ” collaboration with pop and R&B greats, the Transfer had only person in mind: Arif Mardin.

“Turns out he was who they wanted to do it, too,” Hauser said. “He’s such a great producer and someone we’ve known for over 20 years, when we cut our first album at Atlantic in New York in 1975. He was in the studio at the same time working on the Average White Band’s second album, and so we were always up there in the evenings at the same time, and we became very friendly with him.”

The “Tonin’ ” concept came from Doug Morris, head of the Warner labels, after he attended a Rhythm & Blues Foundation awards dinner and saw R&B legends performing on stage.

“We modified it somewhat,” Hauser said. “It didn’t become a rhythm and blues album per se, but it was still the idea of working with our contemporaries, our peers.”

Those peers include Phil Collins, Bette Midler, Smokey Robinson, B.B. King, former Rascals singer Felix Cavaliere, James Taylor and Laura Nyro. The first single, “Let’s Hang On,” teams the Transfer – Hauser, Cheryl Bentyne, Alan Paul and Janis Siegel – with Frankie Valli of the Four Seasons.

Despite the Transfer’s brief stay at Columbia, they continued their streak of Grammy wins. Each of their past six studio albums since 1979 have yielded at least one award. This year, they’re nominated for Best Children’s Recording for “The Manhattan Transfer Meets Tubby the Tuba.”

“Just as we had left Columbia, and before we signed with Atlantic, there was this little period of where we were like a ship without a flag or a country,” Hauser said. “This small label (Summit) came to our agent and asked us if we’d be interesting in doing ‘Tubby the Tuba.’ We loved the idea.

“It was originally written in 1945 by Paul Tripp, who’s still alive. He wrote these four stories and because the technology at the time was 78 (rpm) records, it all had to be edited because they couldn’t put the full score on a record, much less all the stories.

“Our record is the first time the entire scores of the four stories have been done and presented that way. It’s very specific where you say your lines and where the music plays. … We were rolling on the floor. Janis was about seven months pregnant, and in between takes, she’d be lying on the floor resting sideways. It was really a blast.”

BWF (before we forget): The Manhattan Transfer returned in 1997 with the country swing album, “Swing.” … Fans can send e-mail to [email protected], or check them out on the Web @ www.west.net/~jrpprod/tmt/tmt.html.

Tags: ,


About the Author

Gerry Galipault debuted Pause & Play online in October 1997. Since then, it has become the definitive place for CD-release dates — with a worldwide audience.



Comments are closed.

Back to Top ↑
  • BEST OF THE WEB

     

    Entertainment Weekly names Pause & Play one of “the 100 greatest Web sites”

  • Album Release Dates

    * Release dates are subject to change due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic

    Jan. 15, 2021 » ZAYN,  Jeff Tweedy, Matthew Sweet, Why Don’t We, You Me at Six, Accept, Peter Schilling, Celeste, etc.

    Jan. 22, 2021 » Bring Me the Horizon, Steve Hackett, Sammy Hagar & The Circle, The Dead Daisies, Jeremiah Fraites, Moon Taxi, Jason Bieler and the Baron Von Bielski Orchestra, Kiwi Jr., Teen Creeps, etc.

    Jan. 29, 2021 » “NOW That’s What I Call Music! 77,” Ani DiFranco, Steven Wilson, The Besnard Lakes, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Martin Gore, Lucero, Selwyn Birchwood, Langhorne Slim, Arlo Parks, The Dead South, etc.

    Feb. 5, 2021 » Foo Fighters, Fleet Foxes, Common, slowthai, A.J. Croce, Deacon Blue, Hounds, John Williams, Aaron Watson, TV Priest, The Telescopes, Sarah Mary Chadwick, John Carpenter, Paul Cardall, etc.

    More New Releases » Feb. 12 and Beyond: Florida Georgia Line, Sia, Pentatonix, Tomorrow X Together, The Pretty Reckless, Robin Thicke, Pale Waves, London Grammar, Jillette Johnson, Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, SG Lewis, Escape the Fate, Mogwai, Hearty Har, The Hold Steady, Alice Cooper, Willie Nelson, Madison Beer, Architects, Bonnie Tyler, Lucy Spraggan, Pat Metheny, Kings of Leon, Chevelle, A Day to Remember, Neil Young, Teenage Fanclub, Jimbo Mathus & Andrew Bird, Visionist, Rob Zombie, The Paper Kites, Butch Walker, Lana Del Rey, Ringo Starr, Loretta Lynn, Sting, Ryan Adams, Steve Earle & The Dukes, Evanescence, AJR, Greta Van Fleet, Escape the Fate, Dumpstaphunk, Del Amitri, Mick Fleetwood & Friends, Gary Numan, and many more.

    More Upcoming Releases » Albums coming in 2020 but yet to be scheduled




    Elton John loves Pauseandplay.comDeals of the DayBest SellersSennheiser MOMENTUM 2 Wireless Over-Ear HeadphonesIE 400 Pro In-Ear Monitors

  • New Merch at Hot TopicSave on Tablets at Walmart.comBand T-ShirtsTurntables & AccessoriesHome Audio SystemsAmazon Tap $40 OffSave up to 90% on Textbooks

    NOTE: Pauseandplay.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. We also participate in other affiliate programs.

  • Love Pauseandplay.com? We do, too … Help us keep it going. (Every little bit helps.) We ♥ u.




  • Recent Posts

  • Connect on Facebook

  • On Twitter