Philip Chaffin Records "When the Wind Blows South," a New Disc of American Songbook Tunes

News   Philip Chaffin Records "When the Wind Blows South," a New Disc of American Songbook Tunes PS Classics co-founder and A&R director Philip Chaffin will be in a Manhattan recording studio Aug. 11 completing work on his third solo album, currently called "When the Wind Blows South." Expect theatre songs and American pop.
Philip Chaffin
Philip Chaffin

Sam Davis is conducting the orchestra. The arrangers include Larry Hochman, Michael Starobin, John McDaniel, Jeff Blumenkrantz, Dan Lipton, Glen Daum and Fred Lassen. The album is being produced by Tommy Krasker.

Krasker told Playbill.com he's working toward a Nov. 4 release date. (The album's title is borrowed from the little-known 1936 song by Harold Arlen and "Yip" Harburg.)

Krasker said, "As always, I won't say much about repertoire until the album is well into post-production, but I will say that the album was inspired by a road trip Philip and I took in May of 2006 from New York to Savannah. We were tossing around ideas for his next album during the drive South. Then, while in Savannah, we took a carriage tour that stopped at Johnny Mercer's gravesite, and I guess the idea for the album — and the feel — sort of crystallized there. As the title suggests, it takes its cue from Philip's Southern roots, but in unexpected ways. It took us a couple years after that road trip to figure out exactly how to say what we wanted to say. And as always happens when Philip and I work on an album, the repertoire is a mix of the known and the little-known. The theatre songs include selections by Harold Arlen, Jerry Herman, Burton Lane, Frank Loesser, plus — fittingly — a couple of Johnny Mercer tracks."

Actor-singer Chaffin has appeared in New York City in both concerts (including several of the Encores! productions at City Center, as well as Lyrics and Lyricists at the 92nd Street Y and the Songwriter Series at Joe's Pub) and in theatrical evenings, including the Broadway premiere of Alan Menken and Tim Rice's King David.

Chaffin is featured on recordings of Nonesuch's Pardon My English, New World Records' Tell Me More, and PS Classics' own "Windflowers: The Songs of Jerome Moross" and "The Maury Yeston Songbook." His first CD, the big-band album "Where Do I Go From You?," launched the PS Classics label in November 2000; his second album, "Warm Spring Night," which celebrated nearly a century of Broadway love songs, was released in June 2005. Currently, Chaffin divides his time between performing and running PS Classics, where as A&R director, he reviews submissions and ultimately greenlights all recordings — in particular, those involving the vocal artists who'll appear on solo albums and compilations.

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Founded in 2000 by Tommy Krasker & Philip Chaffin, and a four-time Grammy nominee (for its cast albums of Assassins, Nine: The Musical, Grey Gardens and Company), PS Classics' recent releases include solo discs by Maureen McGovern and Kerry Butler and the original cast recordings of A Catered Affair and Adding Machine. Its upcoming releases include "Jason Danieley and The Frontier Heroes" (Sept. 16) and the next volume in its ongoing Songwriter Series, "Howard Sings Ashman" (Nov. 4). For more information, visit www.psclassics.com.

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