Thursday, March 27, 2008

Movie Music: Re-Animated

Twenty years ago, Stay Awake,the most unique collection of Disney cover songs ever, was first released.

Eschewing the normal "Singers & Standards" format usually employed for the perennial toon tunes, the album took an experimental, alternative approach that yielded results ranging from the awesome (The Replacements' rockin' "Cruella de Vil") to the awful (Tom Waits' "depths of hell" version of "Heigh Ho"). Regardless, Stay Awake was immensely listenable and has become a cult favorite among more non-traditionalist Disneyphiles.

In celebration of its 20th anniversary, the original album's producer Hal Willner is staging a live concert event reuniting several of the original artists and a few newcomers, including Natalie Merchant, Suzanne Vega and David Byrne. Stay Awake Live will be presented April 2 at St. Ann's Warehouse in Brooklyn, New York.

UPDATE: The New York Sun offers highlights of the recent concert.

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