As reported earlier in February 2007, Sting is to appear on the new Steve Nieve CD entitled Welcome to the Voice.
?The true salvation is the human voice.” When these words are sung by Sting on the title track of Welcome to the Voice, we are persuaded to believe in the strength of human desire. The singer – together with opera stars Barbara Bonney, Amanda Roocroft, Sara Fulgoni, and Nathalie Manfrino, as well as his pop comrades Elvis Costello and Robert Wyatt – is celebrating the voice’s sensory, even extra-sensory power, in this modern opera that aims to unite the black and white precision of classical writing with the colour of chance and ?happy accidents” associated with improvised music.
Steve Nieve, Elvis Costello?s long-time pianist and music director, and Nieve?s partner Muriel Teodori, a film/theatre director and psychoanalyst, began working on Welcome To The Voice ten years ago. She wrote the libretto, he composed the music, and together they developed and shaped the project that is a work in homage to the human voice. Welcome To The Voice is a multifaceted piece that welcomes voices from different musical worlds. It lives on the juxtaposition of men who have rough, untrained voices, coming from jazz or rock (Robert Wyatt, Elvis Costello, Sting), with women who have classically trained voices (Barbara Bonney, Amanda Roocroft, Nathalie Manfrino, Sara Fulgoni). The score has been composed for the Brodsky Quartet while Marc Ribot, Ned Rothenberg, and Steve Nieve himself improvise with a jazz feeling.
Apart from the music itself, the beauty of this project lies in the profound idealistic ? even romantic ? themes that transcend all levels of the work. The catchphrase is: ?unlikely encounter?. Seemingly opposing music genres, classes, artists, languages, and codes are unified in the name of love and art. It?s no wonder that the project has attracted all the high-profile artists that collaborate in the opera and contribute to the uniqueness of this work.
01 Prologue [10:53] – Sting, Steve Nieve
02 The Ghost of Carmen [6:02] – Sarah Fulgoni, Sting, Steve Nieve
03 Grand grand freedom [7:08] – Sting, Steve Nieve, Robert Wyatt, The Steel Workers Chorus
04 Welcome to the Voice [4:05] – Sting, Steve Nieve
05 Ghost of Butterfly [2:47] – Nathalie Manfrino, Steve Nieve
06 Ghost of Norma [4:37] – Amanda Roocroft, Steve Nieve
07 To Be is Strong [3:30] – Sting, Steve Nieve
08 Perfume Song [4:47] – Barbara Bonney, Steve Nieve
09 Desire [2:36] – Sting, Steve Nieve
10 Troublemaker [4:14] – Elvis Costello, Robert Wyatt, Steve Nieve, The Steel Workers Chorus
11 Don’t Touch [4:36] – Barbara Bonney, Steve Nieve
12 Distanciation [0:46] – Steve Nieve, The Steel Workers Chorus
13 Happiness [3:02] – Robert Wyatt, Sting, Steve Nieve
14 Despair [6:45] – Elvis Costello, Sting, Robert Wyatt, Barbara Bonney, Amanda Roocroft, Sarah Fulgoni, Nathalie Manfrino, Steve Nieve
15 Unlikely [4:57] – Sting, Barbara Bonney, Sarah Fulgoni, Robert Wyatt, Nathalie Manfrino, Amanda Roocroft, Elvis Costello, Steve Nieve, The Steel Workers Chorus