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Darlene Koldenhoven | Solitary Treasures

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Easy Listening: Classical Pop Easy Listening: Adult contemporary Moods: Type: Vocal
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Solitary Treasures

by Darlene Koldenhoven

Grammy Winner Darlene Koldenhoven's stunning, emotional vocal styles from the operatic Nessun Dorma to the adult contemporary Kiss From a Rose are wrapped up in a masterpiece of compelling, classical crossover orchestral ambience with world overtones.
Genre: Easy Listening: Classical Pop
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Nessun Dorma from Turandot
3:39 $0.99
2. Lo Specchio
3:16 $0.99
3. Clair de lune for Bella's Lullaby
0:58 $0.99
4. Bella's Lullaby
2:18 $0.99
5. Kiss From a Rose
5:17 $0.99
6. All I Am
4:19 $0.99
7. Ay Carino
4:16 $0.99
8. A Celtic American Treasury
5:07 $0.99
9. Lucid See
4:08 $0.99
10. The Last Words You Said
4:11 $0.99
11. Remember Me
5:08 $0.99
12. The Prayer from Quest for Camelot
3:32 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Solitary Treasures - Darlene Koldenhoven - Nominated Best Vocal Album 2012 by Broadcasters Worldwide

Solitary Treasures, produced by Grammy Award Winner Darlene Koldenhoven, reveals the remarkable depth of musicianship and talent of this music industry pro. Darlene not only delivers her Grammy-winning multi-octave vocals for this album, but arranged, orchestrated, played piano and keyboards, sang harmonies, even engineered and programmed eight out of twelve tracks and composed three of them on this her seventh album on her indie label, TimeArt Recordings.

Vocally, lyrically, musically, Solitary Treasures opens a trove of passion, drama, intrigue, love, longing, guidance, gentleness, heartland and hope, set with elements of classical, classical crossover, romantic ballad, adult contemporary pop, world music and Darlene’s compelling originals. As the title suggests, each piece truly is a gem unto its own spectacular qualities, unique yet complimenting each other as a whole – like a playlist for seekers of a beautiful, deep listening and extraordinarily moving experience.

From the triumphant operatic opener, the tenor aria by Puccini from Turandot, “Nessun Dorma,” to Darlene’s riveting commemorative original “Remember Me” featuring rock guitar solo, there is singing and music of wild abandon to moments of deep reflection. Manuel Alejandro’s “Ay Carino,” sung in Spanish with its infectious Latin rhythms, dances it way to the innocently and sultrily sung “A Celtic American Treasury,” a medley Darlene arranged to include “Down by the Salley Gardens,” “Shenandoah,” and “The Water is Wide” with a little Americana instrumental of her own. The charming Italian classical crossover ‘aria’ “Lo Specchio” (The Mirror) by Kevin Malpass, Chris Neil & Julia Velo dresses the stage with Darlene’s beautiful coloratura solo singing and deliberate, lyrical phrasing. Darlene’s arrangement of Seal’s “Kiss From a Rose” is sung with a pop flare and is enhanced with curious instrumental twists and classical choirs of children and adults bridging on a grand crescendo before settling back into the native groove of the song. The grander, romantic songs “All I Am,” by Kevin Malpass & Catherine Porter, “The Last Words You Said” by Richard Marx & Janey Clewer, and Darlene’s arrangement of the song she sang on The Young and the Restless, “The Prayer” from Quest for Camelot by David Foster & Carole Bayer-Sager, are breathtaking standouts. “Clair de lune for Bella’s Lullaby” sweetly introduces the stellar and only vocalise on this album for “Bella’s Lullaby” from the hit soundtrack for Twilight; the voice and piano arranged by Darlene with orchestra. Darlene arranged the familiar Debussy piano piece as the vocalise introduction to the Burwell piece. The one exclusively instrumental piece, “Lucid See,” is like drifting off to the sound of relaxing surf, showcasing Darlene’s talent for melodic instrumental composition and performance on piano. Mike Miller dazzles on all the various guitars performed on the album – acoustic, electric, cavaquino, banjo, and dobro. Chris Bleth appears on oboe, Terry Glenny –violin, Jimbo Ross –viola, and Nika Ross –cello. Steve Shepherd’s creative mixing blended it all together seamlessly and dynamically and Ron Bousted’s final mastering touch gave it that shiny ambience. Solitary Treasures –a work of art from alpha to omega.

Solitary Treasures 10/10/11 is the third album by Darlene Koldenhoven created and recorded within the first nine months of 2011 beginning with the 17 song, classical voice and piano, Angel on Ivories 2/11/11 followed by the uplifting, inspirational and relaxing Inspired by a True Story 6/28/11. Broadcasters worldwide voted Darlene’s previous two albums #1 in 2007, Infinite Voice Best Vocal Album and Heavenly Peace Best Holiday Album.

Total Time 45:51



to write a review

Raj Manoharan (www.rajmanreviews.blogspot.com)

The RajMan Review
Darlene Koldenhoven’s latest album not only serves as a wonderful showcase for the Grammy Award-winning singer’s impressive five-octave vocal range, but also provides a great mix of classical and pop standards and tunes that will appeal to most musical tastes.

The CD offers Koldenhoven’s interpretations of everything from “Nessun Dorma” and “Lo Specchio” to “Kiss from a Rose” and a suite from the Twilight movies. The result is an absorbing and exhilarating listening experience that never lets up from beginning to end.

Koldenhoven, who has lent her vocal talents to albums by several superstars and performed as a featured soloist on Yanni’s globally popular PBS Acropolis special, has an incredible voice that charms, enraptures, and takes the breath away. Rarely have I been so captivated by a singer throughout an entire album.

A great deal of the CD’s effectiveness owes to the rich, lush orchestration and instrumentation of the music. Koldenhoven also produces and sequences many of the tracks in addition to masterfully playing piano and is backed by both a solid rock rhythm section and a symphony. This gives the album the feel of classic records from the 1950s and 1960s, but with a modern sensibility.

Song highlights include “Kiss from a Rose,” which is fairly faithful to Seal’s original hit single but features a trippy version of the bridge with both a children’s and an adult choir; a Twilight medley that is creepily romantic (although it has no lyrics, Koldenhoven’s vocal affectations are appropriately haunting); “Ay Carino” (I don’t understand a word of it, but Koldenhoven’s sultry Spanish vocalization thoroughly entices me); the piano-based instrumental “Lucid See”; and “The Prayer” from The Quest for Camelot.

Favorites notwithstanding, every song on this CD is a stunner, thanks to Koldenhoven’s golden voice, the impeccable musicianship, the high technical quality of the recordings, and the pedigree of many of the tunes. No matter your musical taste, this is really a winner.

Michael Diamond (www.michaeldiamondmusic.com)

Review excerpt from Music & Media Focus
While you may or may not immediately recognize Darlene Koldenhoven by name, there is a good chance you have heard her voice. It could have been in her appearance as the featured soprano soloist on "Yanni – Live At The Acropolis," which has been seen by over 1.5 billion viewers on PBS, or perhaps in her role as the tambourine-waving choir nun and real life vocal coach/choir director for the films "Sister Act" and "Sister Act II" with Whoopie Goldberg. Other possibilities include her multiple appearances on The Academy Awards and three American Idol specials. The major artists she has performed or recorded with includes: Barbara Streisand, Celine Dion, Rod Stewart, Neil Young, Ramsey Lewis, The Chicago Symphony Orchestra, London’s Royal Philharmonic, and my favorite, Pink Floyd on their “Momentary Lapse Of Reason” recording, which she received a Platinum Album for.

Solitary Treasures opens with a spectacular rendering of “Nessun Dorma from Tunandot.” A brief version of “Claire De Lune” serves as an introduction to “Bella’s Lullaby” from the soundtrack of the hugely popular film Twilight, which is beautifully orchestrated here and sung in wordless vocals. Darlene gives a most inventive interpretation of Seal’s “Kiss From A Rose.” In spite of this being a challenging and idiosyncratic song to sing, her interpretation succeeds and adds innovative variations. While there is no shortage of emotionally evocative music on the album, a real high point is the stirring “Remember Me” which was written as a tribute to our nation’s military heroes, including Darlene’s late father.

Given the extraordinary range of her musical resume, it is hardly surprising that this album showcases that diversity, encompassing classical, opera, pop, rock, world music, and more. “Solitary Treasures” is a masterpiece by one of the most truly remarkable vocal talents I have heard in quite a while. Accompanied by a host of world-class musicians, Darlene Koldenhoven shines not only as a virtuoso vocalist, but also as a composer, arranger, orchestrator, and instrumentalist. It is a rare gift to be able to cover such diverse musical terrain and to do it all so exceedingly well. As the title implies, there truly is treasure to be found within the tracks of this exceptional recording.

For a full length review of this CD, as well as others, please visit: www.michaeldiamondmusic.com

Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
"Solitary Treasures" is a very eclectic collection of eleven vocals and one instrumental piece from such diverse musical genres as opera, classical crossover, pop, traditional folk, and world. Darlene Koldenhoven’s five-octave vocal range is astounding, as is her versatility. She is a Grammy Award winner and has received three other nominations. In addition to singing on this album, Koldenhoven did the arrangements and orchestrations, composed two of the songs, played keyboards and piano, produced the recording, and also sang some of the back-up vocals. Her resume is all over the map - literally and figuratively. In addition to performing and composing, Koldenhoven has created a comprehensive music education book with seven instructional CDs to train the mind’s “musical ear” and teach people how to sing, entitled Tune Your Voice. She was also one of the two singers in Yanni’s Live From the Acropolis video performing his exhilarating “Aria.” While I truly appreciate Koldenhoven’s goal of demonstrating to her audience that classical and pop music can “live together and thrive,” for my ears, it’s a dizzying mix. But that’s just me, and I have a tremendous respect for artists of this calibre who seek to introduce all kinds of music to their listeners.

The first of the “Solitary Treasures” is “Nessun Dorma” from the opera Turandot. Usually performed by a tenor voice, this is the song that brought Paul Potts international recognition on Britain’s Got Talent a few years ago. Koldenhoven sings it an octave higher than the tenor range to suit her own voice, and creates goose bumps with her passionate performance. Koldenhoven plays an excerpt from “Clair De Lune” as an intro to “Bella’s Lullaby” from Twilight. In this song, she performs vocalise (without lyrics) over a lovely piano and orchestration accompaniment. From those more formal classical pieces, the album goes to Seal’s “Kiss From a Rose.” It’s fascinating how Koldenhoven changes her voice to suit a pop style of music. That style carries into “All I Am,” a deeply emotional love ballad that I really like. “A Celtic American Treasury” is a medley of “Down By the Salley Gardens,” “Shenandoah,” and “The Water Is Wide,” sung with sweet, clear innocence. “Lucid See” is a beautiful original instrumental track that has Koldenhoven performing on piano with glittering keyboard and guitar accompaniment. “Remember Me,” the second original song, is a stirring tribute to heroes and includes powerful guitar playing by Mike Miller in addition to the vocals. The closing song is the popular “The Prayer” by David Foster and Carol Bayer-Sager, and Koldenhoven’s version is lovely. If you are a fan of fine vocal music, be sure to check this album out!