Curt Smith | Halfway, Pleased

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Pop: Pop Pop: Ambient Pop Moods: Solo Male Artist
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Halfway, Pleased

by Curt Smith

Lush, introspective, semi-autobiographical pop from Tears for Fears co-founder.
Genre: Pop: Pop
Release Date: 

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1. Perfect Day
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4:21 $0.99
2. Seven of Sundays
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4:01 $0.99
3. Halfway Pleased
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4:08 $0.99
4. Greatest Divide
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4:32 $0.99
5. Coming Out
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4:35 $0.99
6. Aeroplane
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5:37 $0.99
7. Two
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3:55 $0.99
8. Addict
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7:49 $0.99
9. Cover Us
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2:24 $0.99
10. Who You Are
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4:51 $0.99
11. Where Do I Go?
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4:56 $0.99
12. Snow Hill (Live)
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4:43 $0.99
13. Seven of Sundays (Acoustic)
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4:02 $0.99
14. Coming Out (Acoustic)
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3:29 $0.99
15. Seven of Sundays (Duet with SO)
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3:52 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Curt Smith is a musician, singer and songwriter, whose soaring voice is instantly recognizable to the millions of worldwide fans of Tears for Fears, the British group he co-founded in 1981. Still an active, acclaimed musician more than two decades later, Smith released his second solo album, "Halfway, pleased" via his own KOOK Media imprint in May, 2008.

In addition to his solo career, the prolific Smith has also written music for television and is collaborating on a theatrical musical. His next creative goal is to compose for film. "The idea of adding a visual component to the lyrical and musical composition," he says, "appeals to me."

Smith, now a naturalized U.S. citizen, originally hails from Bath, England, where he and Roland Orzabal met when both were teenagers. They first formed a band at school, for which Smith taught himself to play bass guitar – "we needed a bass player!" – and later formed the band Graduate, which achieved fame in Europe, and released its only album in 1980.

After disbanding Graduate, Smith and Orzabal founded Tears for Fears. TFF’s debut album, 1982’s landmark "The Hurting," went on to produce three international bestselling singles – "Change," "Mad World," and "Pale Shelter" – each with indelible lead vocals provided by Smith.

Their 1985 sophomore album, "Songs from the Big Chair," was even more successful, yielding hits including "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" (memorably sung by Smith), "Shout," and "Head Over Heels" (which Smith co-wrote). The duo spent the next several years recording their 1990 album "The Seeds of Love," which proved to be another bestseller the world over, but Smith left the band shortly after its release. "It had become unbearable," he says now. "This was due to fame as much as to the personal friction between Roland and me. I could either stop altogether, or continue in a better environment on my own. I moved to New York and found the latter."

Smith acclimated to life in New York by hosting an MTV show, as well as a new music radio show that was syndicated to over 300 U.S. colleges, and by teaching a music industry course at New York University. Then, in 1995 a mutual friend introduced Smith to songwriter-guitarist Charlton Pettus. "I liked him, even though he used the word ‘meritocracy’ in the first sentence he spoke to me," Smith jokes. "I liked his passion. I’d spent so much time around people in the industry whose prime concern was business and income, that talking to someone whose love of music was so obvious made me realize why I’d become a musician in the first place."

Smith and Pettus began writing together and formed a band called Mayfield. "It was first and foremost a live band," Smith explains. "I wanted to play gigs in small clubs, and record without the use of too much technology." Mayfield released a self-titled album in 1997. "I loved it," Smith says. "Technically it could have undoubtedly been better, but that would have been missing the point."

In 1998 Smith’s wife Frances was offered a prestigious position in Los Angeles. "It was a big decision as we both loved New York so much," Smith recalls, "but the opportunity was just too good to turn down. Sometimes you have to embrace change and see where it leads." Within a few years it led to their two daughters being born, and to Pettus and his family, for unrelated reasons, also relocating to Los Angeles.

During 2001 Smith began work on what was to become "Halfway, pleased," but the project soon had to be put on hold: he had begun speaking to Roland Orzabal again after 9 years of silence. Their conversations culminated in TFF reforming for 2004’s "Everybody Loves A Happy Ending," which led to a worldwide tour, so it wasn’t until 2006 that Smith had time to resume work on "Halfway, pleased."

The semi-autobiographical album explores Smith’s relationships with his children, parents and friends. "I prefer writing slightly cryptic lyrics," he confides, "that take some thought, and rely on the things that are left unsaid but hinted at." Even the title is autobiographical, Smith notes, with its all-important comma: "I figure I’m about halfway through life," he smiles, "and I’m quite pleased."

The album’s 15 introspective, filmic tracks range include the yearning ballad "Seven of Sundays" (which also appears as a bonus track, sung in duet with French artist SO), the lush harmonies of "Greatest Divide," the compelling progression of "Two" and the hypnotic rhythms of "Addict." The album includes as additional bonus tracks acoustic versions of "Seven of Sundays" and "Coming Out" and a live version of "Snow Hill." All the songs except "Seven of Sundays" (written by Charlton Pettus and Chesney Hawkes) were co-written by Smith and Pettus.


Reviews


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jaime rodriguez

Halfway pleased
As a longtime TFF fan, I had great expectations given the amazing return in "Everybody Loves a Happy Ending. Once again the colours shine bright in Curt Smiths melodic vision, the opener Perfect day lays the table replete with sweet irony pop. The album extends into a slick introspective journey with voicings signature of masterful composition and sincerity. It comes across so easy its distressing that this level of talent has to go through such negotiation to be heard. To all here do yourself a grand favor and get this album and if you have not gotten the TFF's Everybody Loves..... get these both and get some salvation.. Thanks Curt... waiting patiently for more!!

Sheila Kingsley

Wonderful
Halfway Pleased is very personal and beautiful Album. This is a very quiet, and tranquil album from Curt Smith. I love the melody, tenderness of songs, and deeply personal lyrics. This is a must have!. Great job Curt.

Danny Cricks

Cheers
Cheers to Curt on his recent solo album "Halfway Pleased". I have been a fan of Curt's solo and "Tears for Fears" work for as long as I can remember. It started in 1985 when I went to see TFF at the Las Vegas convention center and was totally blown away at there sound. I then have followed the carriers of both Curt and Roland. Thanks to Heather B. I was invited to a small group of Curt's fans in NYC and was blown away by his solo work. This CD has been a long time coming and was worth the wait. "Halfway Pleased" is a look in to Curt's life. "Seven of Sundays" is one of my top songs on the CD. But all are equaly at the top of my list. So cheers to Curt.

Joe Barbarotta

Halfway Pleased
Several years ago I downloaded the rough mix of this album from Curt's website (legally......really!). It is outstanding so I'm expecting this final mix to be ultra-outstanding!

Jaynie "lagirl530"

100%...pleased...
Curt's solo CD is awe-inspiring, deeply touching, thought provoking and immensely strikes the core of your soul. Semi-autobiographical ("...almost halfway thru life, and quite pleased") in nature, take an intimate glimpse of his life with his family and friends, but he truly emotes especially in all things family - pure poetry set to music.

Personal favorite is "Halfway, pleased" about his mother which is a lump-in-the-throat experience. Special mentions go to Perfect Day, Seven of Sundays and Addict with his sultry vocals. Rest of the tracks are slick and unforgettable.

What makes Curt a fan favorite is his fan friendly interactive website at curtsmithofficial.com where he is pro-active with his fans with his laugh-out-loud witty blogs that he constantly and consistently updates about his latest adventures.

Behind the scenes is his other "family" ~ consisting of: Arlene, his faithful supportive "sidekick", "hard working" (Studio) Gruno and "lover of music and children" Afton.

Together with all of above, expect truly the best of Curt Smith and I guarantee he will surely never disappoint...

jim

halfway pleased
the voice is, well, less than dynamic. the lyrics are esoteric to the point of meaninglessness. but the music, ah, the music is superb. your heart would have to be made of stone not to be singing along with gusto with these superb choruses. the unique, lush, and lavish production is the glue which holds this cd together as a cohesive force. "seven of sundays" and "aeroplane" are pure gold

jim

halfway pleased
the voice is, well, less than dynamic. the lyrics are esoteric to the point of meaninglessness. but the music, ah, the music is superb. your heart would have to be made of stone not to be singing along with gusto with these superb choruses. the unique, lush, and lavish production is the glue which holds this cd together as a cohesive force. "seven of sundays" and "aeroplane" are pure gold

Christine Korekach

Heavenly
Curt - Love this CD....

Thank you Curt!

greg Kolbjornsen

Cheers Curt!
Thanks Curt for finishing this album. I've been a long time fan since "The Hurting" and haven't looked back. Waiting for your next album to be released! Keep up the good work!

Vakhtang Svanishvili

Magaria(Geo)
what can i say it`s a music for another people like no one. 0.000000001% of people with ears can understand this. Thank you Curt!
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