World of Slick Music – Oleta Adams

Hi folks!
Thought i should write something today and since it’s Sunday and if you’ve been following you know that means it’s time for a gospel tune. If it’s the first time you discover this little blog of mine i can inform you that whenever i write on a Sunday it’s somekind of gospel tune. You might think immediately of some happy clappy mass choir, if that’s your thing sorry for making you dissapointed but please keep reading anyway. So as the headline says today’s artist is the wonderful Oleta Adams!

She is gorgeous don’t you think?!
As always let’s take it from the beginning and the year was 1953 month May and date the 4th in Seattle, Washington. Her father was a minister so her roots are definetely in gospel music. The family left Seattle and moved to Yakima, Washington. She tried early to get into the business but found her beeing rejected in the later part of the 1970:s when she lived in Los Angeles. The hotshots on the record companies wanted nothing else but disco at this time and that wasn’t Oleta’s thing.

Since Los Angeles wasn’t interested in her style she moved, on the advice of her singing coach, to Kansas City. While there she did a variety of local gigs and actually made 2 self-financed albums thou both failed to sell. Then at one time when performing at a hotel in Kansas City two british (!) guys called Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith, they were the founders of 1980:s popular band Tears for Fears, spotted her and immediately liked what they heard. Oleta got invited to sing on the group’s upcoming album The Seeds of Love released in 1989.  The listeners were taken aback by the soulful female voice that was prominently featured on the album.

Oleta and Tears for Fears performing together in 1989.
Her vocal contributions on the album helped it generate generally positive reviews. On the song “Woman in Chains” she sang duet with Roland Orzabal and it featured Phil Collins on drums. This became Oleta’s first hit. She joined Tears for Fears on a world tour 1990 and was featured as the band’s opening act while remaining on stage to sing and play the piano with the ‘Fears. Roland and the producer of the Seeds album Dave Bascombe helped produce the Circle of One album of Oleta, her like real official debut album. It became a huge success and sold gold much beacuse Oleta’s own interpreatation of Brenda Russell’s song Get Here. She had made it into a more gospel ballad.

Oleta and her producers Dave Bascombe (left) and Roland Orzabal (right)
Now she was more established and continued making albums still more slick ballads but eventually she moved to more contemporary r&b. Despite having great producers the albums didn’t match the success of the Circle one. In 1997 she released a more gospel/christian theme album and the year after she toured with Phil Collins and his big band as a featured vocalist. In 2004 she rejoined forces with her discovers, Tears for Fears when singing “Woman in Chains” on stage in Kansas City offcourse! Her latest album Let’s Stay Here came in 2009.

On the more private side is she married to drummer John Cushon, duh offcourse she picked a drummer cause we’re so totally awesome…i always knew there was something extra cool about her lol! Anyway they met in 1980 while working on a demo for Oleta who claimed she never really felt the passion of getting married. Then in 1994 they were both involved in the big earthquake that affected Los Angeles. Oleta referred to this as a sign from God that she was ready to marry. The two of them married in January 17 1994 in United Methodist church in Kansas City where they both taught Sunday school.

Left to right: John Cushon, drummer, tour manager and husband of Oleta, Patty Peterson (vocals), Ricky Peterson (keyboards), Paul Peterson (bass)
Oleta has one of the most beautiful and most purest voices in the bizness and what i believe somewhat overlooked. She’s all classy and with dignity and integrity and has a really wonderful voice. So why should she like show her boobs every now and then like many others do today, no way she would do that!
Ok finally about the song then, the one i’ve choosed is from her most succesful album and her real official debut album Circle of One, picture below, and since it’s Sunday it’s a more gospel penned tune called “I’ve Got to Sing My Song”.

Circle of One

So as always enjoy your listening!!
Tags: #worldofslickmusic #oletaadams #rolandorzabal #curtsmith #tearsforfears #philcollins #davebascombe #brendarussell #johncushon #pattypeterson #rickypeterson #paulpeterson

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