Lakeshore Records has released Sally Stevens Sings–Jean-Michel Bernard Plays, available now digitally worldwide! Singer, lyricist and choral director Sally Stevens has had an over fifty-year storied career performing for the biggest names in show business– Herb Alpert, Lou Adler, Nat King Cole and Burt Bacharach, as well as Lalo Schifrin, Michel Legrand, Jerry Goldsmith and more. After a charmed meeting performing at a Lalo Schifrin tribute concert, Stevens was invited to perform with French pianist, composer, educator, and producer Jean-Michel Bernard.
Soundtrack Available Now: [Download/Listen]
Sally Stevens Sings – Jean-Michel Bernard Plays
Sally Stevens & Jean–Michel Bernard
- Colored Sky – Sally Stevens & Jean-Michel Bernard
- Basic Instinct – Jean-Michel Bernard
- Once Upon a Summertime – Sally Stevens & Jean-Michel Bernard
- The Cat – Jean-Michel Bernard
- On Rainy Afternoons – Sally Stevens & Jean-Michel Bernard
- The Science of Sleep Opening Theme – Jean-Michel Bernard
- The Look of Love – Sally Stevens & Jean-Michel Bernard
- La Scoumoune – Jean-Michel Bernard
- The Sweetheart Tree – Sally Stevens & Jean-Michel Bernard
- Merry Christmas Mr.Lawrence – Jean-Michel Bernard
- Flying Dreams – Sally Stevens & Jean-Michel Bernard
- Taxi Driver – Jean-Michel Bernard
- D’un Bleriot l’autre – Jean-Michel Bernard
- That Night – Sally Stevens & Jean-Michel Bernard
- Spartacus – Jean-Michel Bernard
- Chanson d’Héléne – Jean-Michel Bernard
Bernard who has worked with everyone from Claude Chabrol and Ray Charles, to Ennio Morricone and Michel Gondry, has chosen a colorful selection of songs from every era of film, to reimagine with Stevens. The vocals for the album were recorded at Capitol Studios with Al Schmitt and then the tracks were augmented and expanded in Paris by Bernard.
Says Stevens: “The possibility of recording together had come up over recent years, and it burst full bloom when we decided to go into Capitol with Al Schmitt and record some vocals, really just for the fun of it. That project expanded from three songs to seven songs with vocals, and Jean-Michel then took the tracks back to Paris with him and combined them with the incredible instrumental tracks he performs. And thus, we have the gift of this wonderful project.”
Notes Bernard: “I had known Sally for a long time through her performances in film scores. I had to meet her, meet THE legendary Sally Stevens! I contacted her and during a Lalo Schifrin tribute concert at the Vibrato Grill in Los Angeles, I took the opportunity to invite her to sing two songs. Following the success of this concert, I came up with the idea of recording a few songs together and thus the album ‘Sally Sings, JMB Plays’ was born under the care of our dear friend, the legendary Al Schmitt at Capitol Studios. We recorded seven songs, so I added tracks on the solo piano that I had recorded in France to complete, always music by legendary composers for the cinema.”
ABOUT SALLY STEVENS
Sally Stevens is a singer/ lyricist/ choral director, who has worked in Hollywood for the last fifty or so years, in the fields of film scoring, sound recordings, commercials, variety and Prime Time TV, and concert. She has sung on hundreds of film scores and tv shows, as a soloist or with part of a vocal ensemble, and she served as Choral Director for the OSCARS broadcast for twenty-two years.
Herb Alpert and Lou Adler (they were partners at the time in the late fifties, before either of their astonishing careers had burst forth) produced a single on Dot Records with Sally as an artist, singing two songs she wrote, while still a student at UCLA. She began her professional career in the sixties, on concert tours with Ray Conniff and Nat King Cole. Later she toured with Burt Bacharach in concert in Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe, the East Coast tent circuit South America, the Philippines, Canada and Australia.
She became established in Hollywood as part of the session singer community, and worked in Variety TV in the mid-sixties, on the Danny Kaye, Red Skelton and Carol Burnett shows. She also worked on national commercials during the late sixties and seventies, and did solo film score vocals for composers Lalo Schifrin, Michael Small, Michel Legrand, Burt Bacharach, Jerry Goldsmith, Dominic Frontiere and others. She also has written lyrics for film and sound recordings projects, with Dominic Frontiere (On Any Sunday) Don Ellis (Ruby) Burt Bacharach (WOMAN, the album recorded with the Houston Symphony) and Dave Grusin (Absence of Malice, Who Comes This Night?), and a source cue which years later was recorded by James Taylor in his first Christmas album release, and is included in later compilations of his Christmas releases
Along the way her work expanded from singing to singing and contracting vocals, and she assembled choirs for John Williams, Alan Silvestri, James Newton Howard, Danny Elfman, James Horner, Marc Shaiman, Don Davis, Hans Zimmer, John Debney, Alf Clausen, Walter Murphy, Bill Conti and others. She sings the Main Title for The Simpsons and Family Guy, and worked on both shows from their inception.
She is currently working on a memoir, sharing stories of her five or six decades in the music business and all the changes to the industry over the years, and is absolutely thrilled to have done this project with Jean-Michel, performing songs by some of the iconic composers she’s had the privilege of working with over the years as well as one of Jean-Michel’s songs. Having worked in many sessions over the years with legendary engineer Al Schmitt at the controls, she said it was so very special to do so at Capitol as “the solo artist” even if it took a few decades to get there. In addition to her working life in the business, she has served on the Boards of Directors of SAG and AFTRA, and is currently a Trustee of the SAG AFTRA Health Plans and the AFTRA Retirement plan. In the early 2000’s she began her study of the art of black and white photography. and has had several solo Fine Art Photography exhibits in Los Angeles. Work from her “Film Composers: Behind the Scenes” series was also included in 2013 exhibit at Cite de la Musique, Paris France.
ABOUT JEAN-MICHEL BERNARD
Jean-Michel Bernard is a French pianist, composer, educator, orchestrator, and music producer. He is well known for regularly writing, performing, and scoring for films, such as The Science of Sleep, Hugo, Paris-Manhattan, Ca$h, and Be Kind Rewind. He began playing the piano at the age of two and has collaborated with Claude Chabrol, Ray Charles, Lalo Schifrin, Ennio Morricone, Francis Veber, Etienne Chatiliez, Fanny Ardant, Michel Gondry (Human nature, The Science of Sleep, Be Kind Rewind) and Martin Scorsese (Hugo Cabret) among others.
He created the class for film music composition at the Paris Conservatory and has most recently scored Gela Babluani’s film Money which won the Grand Prix at the Brussels Film Festival 2018 and Ballad for a Pierced Heart (2020) by Greek director Yannis Economides.
He received the 2017 SACEM Grand Prix for film music and has just been officially designated Steinway Artist.
After his album Jean-Michel Bernard Plays Lalo Schifrin (2017) at Varese/ Cristal, his new album Sally Stevens sings, Jean-Michel Bernard Plays will be released by Lakeshore (2020).
He travels around the world with his piano concert (FMF Krakow, Los Angeles, Japan, France, Germany, Croatia etc.)
“Shout out to Ray Charles—I love him because he’s better than me! This guy is a genius, in my mind! And Lalo Schifrin–I cannot find words to reflect my admiration for his genius!”