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Spotlights [Issue # 9 ]
Angela McCluskey: A Wee Bit Of Soul

By Peter Vouras

Imagine what the world would be like without Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Avril Lavigne, and their ilk that pervade the airwaves with disposable pabulum. Imagine a world where music matters; where songs are written and sung with passion and meaning without the almighty dollar or some big fat exec factoring in. Enter Angela McCluskey, whose debut album, The Things We Do, breaks the mold. Angela sings with a sincerity and trueness that comes from living a real life full of pain, heartache, happiness, and redemption.

Calling from Paris where she is recording new songs with Telepopmusic (she sang and co-wrote the smash hit “Breathe”), I asked her why she waited so long to record as solo artist; “Well, I was in a band [The Wild Colonials] so I didn’t have the time. You finish recording your album, you tour, and you start writing another record.” Reared on Marvin Gaye and Al Green in the industrial city of Glasgow, Angela learned to sing at a very early age, “I used to sing so I could stay up late. I’d do ‘Summertime’ or something and then my family would throw me back in bed.”

The Things We Do was recorded with producer Nathan Larson in Sweden and New York. The majority of the music was done in four days (the only days she had off from recording with Telepopmusic). “We recorded from eight in the morning to three in the morning,” Angela comments. “When we finished it we went to see if a label was interested thinking that we have to re-record everything. Manhattan Records offered us a deal and basically said ‘We love what you’ve done already. Don’t touch a thing.’ We were flabbergasted. We just added strings, horns, and real drums and that was it.” Choice selections are: “It’s Been Done” with its downbeat, groovy feel, the piano driven ballad “Long Live I,” written right after 9/11 sung for the ghosts and dust, and “Sucker,” a guitar ballad about the pangs of a relationship.

Angela McCluskey has the drive and determination to become a major force in today’s music scene. It’s refreshing to see real talent given a chance to succeed.

The Things We Do

A Wee Bit Of Soul Angela McCluskey The Things We Do

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