Sunday, August 7, 2011

Useful Numbers: Dayton Ohio 1903

Randy Newman: Dayton Ohio 1903


Randy Newman has become known for full band pop and lushly orchestrated soundtrack music. He does both things with wonderful artistry. His songs in recent years, especially the ones used in the Pixar films, display a tenderness that very few songwriters can match. But I first heard Newman in ballads like this one, arranged for just voice and Newman’s piano playing. All of the tender emotion of his later work is here as well. This is a sepia-toned song, with a wonderful nostalgic feel. The song is short, under two minutes in fact, but that’s all Newman needs to set the mood.

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