Eva Cassidy and the London Symphony Orchestra

A day after the 60th anniversary of Eva Cassidy’s birth (February 3, 2023) I Can Only Be Me will be released. On this new album the singer is posthumously accompanied by the London Symphony Orchestra.

The new orchestral arrangements are composed by Christopher Willis (Veep, Death of Stalin) and William Ross (Star Wars, Harry Potter). I Can Only Be Me features redefining orchestral versions of classic repertoire including ‘Songbird’, ‘Time After Time’, ‘Autumn Leaves’ and ‘Ain’t No Sunshine’. The album’s title track is a radical reworking of a Stevie Wonder penned song, Eva Cassidy’s musical idol.

The score

The score

‘Songbird’ serves as the lead single from the album. Eva Cassidy’s classic rendition has been given a stunning, spine-tingling makeover. As achingly intimate as the original, now with widescreen grandeur courtesy of the London Symphony Orchestra, the new version offers a fresh take on the song.

Originally released in 1998, two years after Eva’s tragic death at the age of just 33, the title track from her breakthrough album boasts new arrangements by the classical composer Christopher Willis (The Twilight Saga, X-Men, The Death of Stalin) and vocals beautifully restored and enhanced using newly available A.I. technology (similar processes to those used in last year’s ground-breaking The Beatles: Get Back film and recent Revolver album reissue).

Eva in front of Blues Alley

Eva in front of Blues Alley

The London Symphony Orchestra’s stately, immersive accompaniment elevates a song that became an instant Christmas staple when it appeared in the Richard Curtis blockbuster Love Actually in 2003 to spectacular new heights. Incredibly, Eva sounds as present and hypnotic within the sweeping orchestration as she did on her original acoustic take on the Fleetwood Mac favourite which she made entirely her own.

“The wonderful, resonant truth about this song is that Eva is the Songbird, singing naturally from the heart – no ego,” says Christopher Willis. “The goal with the orchestral version was to complement her pure vocal essence with a simple, yet broader instrumental arrangement – a lush musical landscape with Eva’s voice at the centre.”

Like Never Before

Like Never Before

It is the latest chapter in a remarkable, posthumous career that has turned Eva Cassidy into a household name with sales of more than twelve million albums, a plethora of famous fans including Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Adele and Songbird’s writer Christine McVie and seen her songs feature in countless films and TV shows.

Already a fan of the orchestral remake of Songbird is Richard Curtis: “Eva’s original ‘Songbird’ is one of my favourite songs,” says the writer/director. “Now it has an equally beautiful, exquisitely different twin.” Adding: “I’ve known Sting and Trudie Styler for almost forty years and, you know, I think he’s a great singer songwriter but, when I heard Eva Cassidy’s version of ‘Fields of Gold’, it has never ceased to reduce me. It’s the best interpretation of his song that I’ve ever heard.”

All album tracks will be available in high-definition stereo along with Dolby Atmos and Sony 360 immersive audio formats, a first for Eva Cassidy recordings.


4 responses to “Eva Cassidy and the London Symphony Orchestra”

  1. An immense talent that left us way too soon. I still listen to her albums as she has a magical voice. She is missed. This is a lesson to not miss YOUR opportunity to make your music and mark in life. How great would this have been for her to be in the studio with the LSO, but this helps.

    Warmest regards to her family,

    Jim T.

  2. Colleen Fay says:

    Sadly , I never heard Eva perform live, but I was a fan from the moment a friend pressed a cassette into my hand in 1998. I’ve bought every CD since. Eva’s one-of-a-kind rich soprano and impeccable singing style still reduce e to tears. I consider hear the greatest.

  3. Uwe Brandt says:

    She was so wonderful and a wonderful way to remember her,

  4. Max W. says:

    Can’t wait for it to be in my CD player. She was IMNSHO the greatest sprano of the 20th century that no one had ever heard of.

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