Putting a multi-genre spin on musical classics

Putting a multi-genre spin on musical classics

Award winning theatre performer JONATHAN ROXMOUTH will launch his second studio album, ‘From The Footlights’, at Teatro at Montecasino on Sunday, May 24, at 6pm.
Known for putting his stamp on iconic roles in such shows as ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’, ‘The Phantom Of The Opera’ and ‘Sunset Boulevard’, as well as more intimate musical revues like ‘Noël & Gertie’ and ‘Call Me Lee’, Roxmouth takes listeners on a journey through the art form known as Musical Theatre on ‘From The Footlights’, which follows on his debut album, ‘Stage By Stage’.
PETER TROMP chatted to Roxmouth on the eve of the auspicious event.

Why have you chosen this time to release your third CD?
This was a project that just fell into place of its own accord. I was working with Bryan Schimmel, the Album Arranger and Adam Howard, the Album Engineer, on an event and we started chatting about an album. Usually, conversations like that don’t bear fruit. Five months later we were in the studio.

Tell us everything about ‘From The Footlights’ and what fans can expect from the album.
‘From The Footlights’ is a new album of Musical Theatre songs, some of which are well-known favourites and some of which have never been covered – allowing me to put even more of my stamp on them. The difference is that the songs have been given fresh musical approaches, covering everything from a Broadway Big feel all the way to a kick-ass rock band.

How did you decide on the track selection?
I did not want to do another album of the “same-old, same old” songs from the musicals. I wanted to raise the bar and select songs that people would respond to as new for the first time whilst keeping a few traditional choices on the listing.

As a predominantly live performer, what is your method of replicating the vitality and energy of a live performance in the recorded medium?
This was the toughest thing to figure out initially as I am used to performing to an audience in front of me but, as I got into it, I just began to perform predominantly to whoever was in the booth. This was usually Adam and Bryan. I was just disappointed they didn’t give me a standing ovation.

What were your favourite songs on the album to perform, and why?
Definitely ‘All I Need is the Girl’ (from the musical ‘Gypsy’) because I have always had a thing for big band swing. It’s the first time I have worked with such a full brass section and it’s probably the most fun I have had in ages.

Is there anything on the album that might appeal to those folks that might not be fans of the musical?
Definitely. I think the thing that puts people off about musicals is that they think it’s old fashioned and boring. Not the case here. Aside from the songs being great songs, the musical setting of the whole album encompasses everything from folk to rock to classical, so there’s a pretty good chance that even the unconverted will tap their feet at some point.

After starring in countless musicals over the years, which ones can you say are unequivocally your favourites to perform? Which ones are you desperate to still do?
‘Phantom’ will always be my first love so to speak, but I would gladly take a mistress in ‘Les Misérables’ as Jean Valjean.

Where can people purchase the album, and what can they do if they want to have their CD’s signed?
The album will always be available at any show I perform in and signed afterwards, as well as through my website jonathanroxmouth.com for digital download.

Do you have any touring plans, or special promotional gigs lined up, apart of course for the launch at the Teatro at Montecasino?
Watch this space.