Spotlight on ……

Robert McCloud

Robert

David, Robert & Derek McCloud

I vaguely remember hearing Matt Monro’s voice on records as a child in the 60's, but then I really forgot all about him. Then in the early 80's I started playing a cassette tape my mum had of him, so I suppose that is the first time I became aware of Matt’s voice. On that cassette tape  ‘The Very Best of Matt Monro’, two songs stood out for me, Walk Away and Softly as I Leave You. But it wasn't until the mid 90's before I got the "full on" MM bug and became fully immersed in the music which is dreamy, heavenly, enthralling, exhilarating etc...etc...

People on the Forum will know this already but without question my favourite Matt Monro song has to be his version of Maria from West Side Story. I just wish his final note could last foreverrrrrrrrrrr. It nearly always gives me goose bumps. I wouldn't exclude any particular Matt song from my play list but I have to admit that I much prefer him singing ballads although he can also swing it with the best of them.

Any Matt Monro treatment would truly add to a movie (how can it not). The opening sequence to The Italian Job with Matt singing the wonderful On Days Like These is just such a beautiful opening to the film, and sets the movie up so perfectly..........just perfection. In those days the singer never received an Oscar for recording the song, but nowadays many singer/songwriters do win the Oscar, so if time could be turned back, the rules should have been re-written to allow the singer to receive the award as well. It doesn't seem fair does it, that the artist performing the song gets nothing, apart from the adulation for singing the Oscar winner?

I never saw Matt perform live and that is why I am so chuffed I found the website as it is a way to feel part of his world and I eagerly await the monthly news headlines with anticipation. My favourite aspect of the site is of course the Forum and if anyone reading this would like to join in the fun, then please sign up!

The fans of Matt who regularly visit mattmonro.com would miss it so much if it had to close. In the past year or so, the website has gone off air, so to speak, a couple of times. I really missed reading everyone’s posts and being able to post myself so much. So yes, the website has to stay. What would us Matt’s fans do without it?

‘Fans Reunited’ is great for any of Matt’s fans from around the world to travel to, and is a great way for fans to keep in touch with each other. Many friendships have been made already because of the reunions. I would dearly liked to have attended one myself but it is just too far to travel to. Hopefully there will be one more local to me in the future.

At the last count I had 29 of Matt’s CDs, that's counting all the boxed sets as just one disc.’ The Rare Monro’ is without doubt one of my top three Matt CDs, so is an extremely valuable addition to his catalogue. The follow up ‘The Rarer Monro’ will be awesome too, I am quite sure about that. I can’t wait for the release in September 2012.

Richard Moore joined up with Michele by chance and his contribution to Matt’s releases has never sounded so good, keep up the very good work Richard. Aren’t you glad you eventually took him on, Michele?

One of my favourite Matt DVD releases is Satan’s Harvest. This was Matt’s only movie appearance in which he played the character "Bates" and to be honest he was the best thing in an otherwise forgettable film. But the film also comes with another disc called "Go With Matt Monro" which is just fabulous. Set in the mid sixties we see Matt board a plane bound for Rome, where he sings the rather dreamy Three Coin in the Fountain. Matt looks so cool and handsome sat round the Trevi Fountain while singing the song. This is one of his most beautiful recordings and hopefully it will appear on a CD one day soon.

‘The Ultimate Performer’ is definitely a worthy addition to the Matt Monro DVD list. There aren't that many of Matt’s DVDs available really as so much of the footage was wiped over in the 1960s in order to save on costs so I look forward to any new release, especially ‘Matt at the BBC’. I bought it as soon as it came out (off the internet)!. The interview at Pebble Mill is special, in which Matt mentions the one million dollar signing on fee for joining Capitol............he seemed so apologetic.

If money was no object, millions could be offered to anyone who  "secretly" recorded Matt’s appearance at The Barbican. I would love to see the concert and witness the seven-minute standing ovation he received at the end of the performance.
The DVD releases are truly mind blowing. Before the release of Matt’s 1967 Australian concert, I felt like a kid just a few days before Christmas..........I just couldn't wait for it to be released, I was so excited, unbelievably so.

Talking of Christmas, most all other popular singers brought out a collection of seasonal songs during their career, so it was a surprise no one asked Matt to do a full Christmas album, but we cannot turn the clock back now. But we do have two or three songs that Matt did record, to listen to at Christmas time, thankfully.

Robert

Robert & his Mother

I have only recently started to read Michele’s book on her father.  "The Singers Singer" the Life and Music of Matt Monro, and as I have stated on the forum the book is exceptional, exhilarating, in fact I cannot put it down..............it is that good. I am not a big reader but this book is the BEST book I have ever read. It is SUPERB. I would advise anyone to go and buy it......................NOW...............or even sooner than that.

The Monro family all seem such a friendly bunch, who have the interests of Matt truly in their hearts, and quite rightly so.............and they do not forget Mickie either.
The hardest aspect for Matt Junior is that most people who go to watch him for the first time will be expecting to hear the voice of Matt senior coming out of his mouth. Bur Matt senior was a one off, and no one, absolutely no one could sound like him.

I believe I may be one of Matt’s staunchest fans. After anyone hears his majestic voice, who could fail to fall in love with it? It’s full of humility and power.

Matt’s contribution to the British Music Industry is humungous. Where would that industry be if we never had the magical voice of Matt Monro at all! In my eyes, he truly stood head and shoulders above everyone else

There are three or four of Matt’s CDs that I would like to take to a desert island. The 4 disc ‘Singers Singer’ and ‘The Rare Monro’ being two of those. But if I had to choose one it would definitely be the 2 on 1 release ‘These Years/The Late Late Show’. The first part of the release sees Matt putting his interpretation to newer songs (from the 60's), but the second part is the real Tour De Force as it contains an album full of beautiful and mind blowing ballads which see's Matt’s awesome and beautiful voice and his amazing breath control at it's very best. His glorious tones never sounded as good as it did in the mid sixties, Matt’s voice was at it's very best at that particular time.

For me to describe Matt in three words is so very easy........................World's Greatest Singer...........................without a doubt............................and.....................all his fans around the world miss him terribly.

 

 

 

 

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