Articles about Eva, part 2

Not yet edited, nor likely to be. This is an archival page which includes some “older” reviews and articles about Eva Cassidy. Interesting stuff here, but most links will be outdated.

US FlagARCH CAMPBELL INTERVIEW WITH EVA’S PARENTS: Eva’s sister Margret tells me, “Arch Campbell of NEWS 4 (Washington) met with Mom and Dad at their house. Mom told me the meeting/interview went very well, and everyone had a lovely time. They were able to focus some attention on Eva’s original artwork, too!” This interview will be shown on Channel 4 in the Washington DC area on November 2 between 6:30 and 6:45 PM, according to Anette Cassidy. As far as I know this will not be available via the Internet. **UPDATE: If you weren’t able to watch Arch Campbell’s local news story about Eva, you can read about it here. No pictures, though. (November 3, 2006)




Radio imageRADIO NOTES: Eva Cassidy is listed among the “Top Artists of 2006,” compiled by Richard Gillmann from FOLKDJ-L radio playlists (based on 154719 airplays from 189 different DJs). Eva is #220 on the list this year. One of the Folk DJs who will be sorely missed is Susanne Millsaps (see below). I am sorry to report that “Valley Folk,” another outstanding radio program that often featured Eva’s music has been cancelled. Susan Forbes Hanson, the “Folk Czarina,” will no longer be carried on WFCR-Amherst. Fortunately Susan can still be heard on WHUS in Storrs, CT. If you happen to be a WFCR listener, why not complain? (Updated January 16, 2007)




Radio STATISTICS FROM THE FOLK DJs: Eva’s name appears in the FOLKDJ-L listing of “Top Artists of 2005.” She is number 108 on the list this time. The album SONGBIRD ranked 285 and IMAGINE was ranked 332 in the “Top Albums of 2005” category. The ballad “Fields of Gold” from SONGBIRD and LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY was the most-played song on the folk radio stations this past year, ranked at 232. These lists are compiled by Richard Gillmann of KBCS-FM based on playlists submitted to FOLKDJ-L. (Added January 26, 2006)

US CATHY FINK AND MARCY MARXER TALK ABOUT EVA ON THE RADIO: Agent Steve in York loves to listen to WUMB-Boston on the Internet. WUMB is the only full time folk music radio station in the USA! Recently he tuned in to a program called “Guest Mix” where the featured artists were Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer. ‘The interviewer had Cathy and Marcy speaking about their music and the musicians who have influenced them. Of course Tom Paxton figured in all this. Various songs from C&M and others were included. Near the end they spoke about Grace [Griffith] and her illness and how she lectures on the subject. They also spoke about how Grace brought Eva to the attention of the record label and how earlier, Eva saw her musical direction being along the lines of the folk music which Grace performed and less of the jazz, etc. They finished off with a recorded song from Grace and “How Can I keep from Singing” from Eva.’ (Added October 18, 2005)


Amazon.comEVA IS IN THE AMAZON TOP FIVE “HALL OF FAME”: The on-line retail giant Amazon.com is celebrating its tenth anniversary this month, and has listed its top bestselling artists and authors. Eva Cassidy is their #4 all-time bestseller! This is very exciting news, though not really a surprise. Joel Topcik of the New York Times pointed out that “Eva Trumps Elvis” and wrote, “…A few of the results might have been surprising – Enya at No. 8? – but all the names on the list were recognizable stars. Except one: No. 5, Eva Cassidy. Cassidy was an angelic-voiced but little-known singer whose death from cancer at 33, in 1996, inspired a phenomenal demand for her renditions of songbook standards, jazz and gospel, leading to six posthumous albums culled from unreleased recordings. She’s not necessarily out of place on Amazon’s list, which skews wildly toward white pop-rock (the only solo black artist is Ray Charles at No. 23) and hardly reflects album sales beyond Amazon. But ahead of Bob Dylan (No. 9), Bruce Springsteen (No. 12) and Elvis (No. 25)? The explanation probably lies in the rise of the Internet as a tastemaker, and the explosive growth of online commerce that Amazon itself pioneered. The independent Blix Street label began releasing Cassidy’s recordings in 1998, the year Amazon added music to its inventory. A word-of-mouth campaign, fueled by chat rooms and fan sites, began to seep into the news media, and by December 2000 two Cassidy albums had pushed a top-selling Beatles compilation down to No. 3 at Amazon, with three other Cassidy albums at Nos. 4, 5 and 7. Just how many CD’s she has sold on Amazon to reach No. 5 is unknown; the company does not release sales information other than comparative rankings. But thanks to Amazon consumers, Eva Cassidy is enjoying an unlikely, and lucrative, sort of immortality.” (Added July 26, 2005)


DVDDVD REVIEW: Doug in Pennsylvania found this glowing review of the EVA SINGS DVD. Elly Roberts of the Costa Blanca News in Spain writes, “A complex, shy and stubborn person, she refused to ‘sell-out’ at any cost – even for financial gain. Her sole purpose and existence evolved around her art: singing, painting and a host of other projects. As a child she had perfect pitch and harmony, later learning to play guitar. She never had any formal voice training – she didn’t need any, as you will discover on this wonderfully intimate concert recorded at the Blues Alley Jazz Club in Washington on January 2 and 3, 1996; nine months before she passed away.

Backed by four excellent musicians, she casually saunters through jazz, soul, folk and blues standards. It doesn’t matter about the poor colour quality and amateurish filming, it only serves to highlight her masterful interpretations. The voice is absolutely pristine; possessing superb timbre and control, holding notes with consummate ease. The gentleness on Louis Armstrong’s Wonderful World and Curtis Mayfield’s soul classic, People Get Ready, are juxtaposed by the immense power of Cheek To Cheek and You’ve Changed. Jazz songs like Honeysuckle Rose, is amongst her finest work. Her take on Cyndi Lauper’s smash hit Time After Time, is an absolute and unparalleled treasure. At the end of it all we get Over The Rainbow. If ever a song was meant to be sung by someone – it simply had to be Eva Cassidy. This low-key concert is a must have for people who love seriously great music. Avoid it at your peril.”




Radio 2004 LISTS FROM THE FOLK DJs: Once again Eva Cassidy is listed among the top artists whose music is played on folk music programs. The 2004 list was compiled by Richard Gillman from FOLKDJ-L radio playlists, based on 152312 airplays from 286 different DJs. Eva’s name is #95 on the “Top Artists” list this year. On the “Top Albums” list, SONGBIRD is #237. The most-played songs from the album in 2004 were “Fields of Gold” (23 plays), “Over the Rainbow” (7 plays), “People Get Ready” (7 plays) and “Wade in the Water” (7 plays). Now if only we could get Eva’s music heard on other types of music shows as well, especially in North America! (Added January 6, 2005)


DVD DVD REVIEWS: You have to be a polyglot to be able to read all these:

  • From Germany, a review from SWR television.
  • Here’s a review in Dutch from the Netherlands: http://www.fileunder.nl/archives/2004/12/eva_cassidy_eva_1.php.
  • Another Dutch Review: Johan Bakker in Rotterdam reviewed the DVD for the National Dutch Newspaper ‘Nederlands Dagblad’. The review was published on Friday 26th November 2004. He sent me a translation; here’s an excerpt: “The quality of the images that contain hardly any colors isn’t marvellous. The camera drifts uncomfortably around. Still it is a crushing experience to see and hear Eva sing and play. The ‘homevideo’ character increases that effect. What a relief to see someone concentrating on making music in this period of fast videoclips. Eva Cassidy restrains herself during the singing of her jazz, blues and gospel if you compare it with her studio-recordings. Without echoes and aiming at effect she sounds less polished and thus better. Eva plays the guitar herself and her fourmenband accompanies subserviently and effectively. ‘Cheek to Cheek’ ‘People Get ready’, ‘Over The Rainbow’: almost every song that Eva sings contains chickenskin-moments. The concert was recorded at January 3rd 1996. A year later she wasn’t among us any longer. “




Songbird cover SONGBIRD goes platinum in Europe – again! According to the website of the IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, the European equivalent of RIAA), the album SONGBIRD received its second European Platinum Award in October, 2004. The press release describes the album as “a poignant classic” and states that “Eva Cassidy left a legacy rich in depth and talent.”




CD The October-November 2004 issue of the audiophile magazine and website “The Absolute Sound” mentioned Eva in a review by Sue Kraft: “Who else but Eva Cassidy [Live at Blues Alley, Blix Street Records] could have a sweeter, purer, or more perfect voice to assist in adjusting the optional “focus control” on the Tube Audio Design TA-30? (No one that I can think of.)”




LOTS OF PASSING REFERENCES: The critics at the magazine Stereophile seem to feel that Eva’s albums are among the ultimate tests of stereo equipment. A search of their website turned up quite a few references. Some quotes:

‘Eva Cassidy’s “Cheek to Cheek” served up one of those moments that make audio worthwhile — something that made me melt into my chair with the sheer wonderfulness of it all.’

‘The speakers opened a superbly clear window into Eva Cassidy’s handling of Sting’s “Fields of Gold” that was intensely communicative—it made me regret I had not come across this naturally gifted singer’s work before she died.’

‘On her Live at Blues Alley, Eva Cassidy’s voice was full and luscious, beautifully focused and floated.’

‘Eva Cassidy’s “People Get Ready,” from Live at Blues Alley, had an intoxicating harmonic and ambient richness.’

‘I began with one of my favorites, Eva Cassidy’s super show-stopping “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” from Live at Blues Alley. The ‘989s rendered Cassidy as a solid, holographic presence right there in the room. There was an immediacy I hadn’t heard before, that “palpability” that ST has referred to. Her vocal range, power, phrasing, pinpoint intonation, effortless control, and big dynamic range were all there.’

‘The Snell XA Reference Towers arrived about the time I was swept away by Eva Cassidy. I had never heard a young singer with such range, power, phrasing, and slow, controlled delivery. It was easy to hear her pinpoint intonation, effortless control, and “dynamics that range from the opalescent caress of ballads to full-throated, roof-raising blues and gospel shouts” (from Joel Siegel’s liner note). But it wasn’t until I took Cassidy’s albums to the 2002 Consumer Electronics Show and played them over different loudspeaker systems that I realized how key a role the XA Reference had played in my conversion to wild-eyed Cassidy fan. More than a few of the Show loudspeakers flattened her dynamic range, but back in my listening room, I once again heard the difference between her feathery touch on Harburg and Arlen’s “Over the Rainbow” to the powerhouse belting of Penn and Moman’s “Dark End of the Street.” Listening to Cassidy’s super showstopper, “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” from her Live at Blues Alley, the singer was a solid, holographic presence right there in the room, conveying the rage and sadness she must have felt at the time of the recording, knowing that she was dying.’

Lastly, as part of a review of a Jane Monheit album, Robert Baird wrote of Eva’s “Over the Rainbow”: ‘The tune’s current renaissance began when the late Eva Cassidy cut an interpretatively wondrous guitar, vocal, and strings version in 1992. Without question, this stood alongside Garland’s apotheosis in terms of the raw emotions that pour from Cassidy’s way with the song’s inherently evocative melding of melody and words. Thanks to a belated appearance on the British pop charts and a subsequent profile of the artist on ABC’s Nightline news magazine, Cassidy’s “Rainbow” has given those who come after a new high mark to shoot for.’ (Added October 2004)




Peace EVA IS BECOMING REALLY FASHIONABLE: October 6, 2004: British designer John Galliano presented his latest collection of spring and summer clothing for Dior in Paris this week — and one of the musical selections featured during the fashion show, according to the Sydney Morning Herald, was Eva’s recording of “Imagine”! Maggie Alderson writes, ‘If fashion shows could change the world, John Galliano’s presentation for Christian Dior in Paris might be the one to do it. Besides being a moving anti-war protest, it was probably his best- ever collection for the classic French house. Divided into four sections, each presented with Galliano’s customary sense of drama, it was the last one, opening to Eva Cassidy’s poignant rendition of the John Lennon song Imagine, that came with the message. As Cassidy’s version of the anti-war classic segued into Lennon himself and, finally, Madonna, models with hair and make-up reminiscent of the Biba-era photographs of Sarah Moon paraded by, wearing brightly coloured sweaters appliqued with the words “Dior not war” and “Dior for Peace”.’ Thank you to Hilary in the UK for spotting this one. Eva was definitely in favor of peace but not much for fashion, so I think this is very funny! **UPDATE: This same article has been reprinted in several “Down Under” publications. One of them was very slightly different: “Eva Cassidy’s killingly poignant rendition….” I wonder what the critic originally wrote?




UK Guitarist Keith Grimes recently visited a middle school in Southwick, where he talked about his years working with Eva in the Eva Cassidy Band. According to the article in the Shoreham Herald, Glebe Middle School has a classroom named in Eva’s honor.




Blues Alley Cover “Perfect CD for your dream hifi,” reads the headline of this review of LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY in the Singapore newspaper. Critic Tham Chaik Kong apparently writes about stereo equipment as well as about music, and states, “…The CD that I used most frequently for reviewing audio equipment is Eva Cassidy’s Live At Blues Alley. This is one of the rare jewels of audio recordings in recent years. Its singing, music arrangement and recording are near perfection.” Go read the rest of the article, you’ll love it. Here’s one more quote, though: “Many singers, when they sing the songs of others, are not able to break through and are normally just mimicking the original singers’ interpretation. So at best, they would take the second place. Cassidy is different. She is able to give the songs a new lease of life when she sings Bridge Over Troubled Water, What a Wonderful World and Blue Skies. Although these songs are songs of the mega-stars, and very well listened to by countless number of people, Cassidy’s interpretations of them are so original and persuasive and would make one believe that these songs were tailored and specially written for her. Bravo, Eva, for this is a rare achievement only a few singers in the world can attain!” (Fall 2004)




 Guitar Ken in Hereford writes, “I have just purchased the April 2004 edition of Guitar Techniques (£4.99) from W H Smith in Hereford, England. On pages 44 to 49 is Eva’s acoustic fingerstyle arrangement of Fields of Gold. A CD is included with the magazine, track 14 contains a brief narrative and track 15 contains the complete arrangement.”




UK June 23, 2004: Beware, this one is really really weird! The UK’s Daily Telegraph contains an article about the celebrated actress and playwright Imogen Stubbs. Her first play, “We Happy Few,” has opened in the West End of London, under the direction of her husband Trevor Nunn. (That’s not the weird part.) Apparently Stubbs has also written “a play about the singer-songwriter Jeff Buckley, a new passion of [Nunn’s.] The resulting Beckettian two-hander, in which Buckley and Eva Cassidy, another dead popular singer, are marooned on a desert island, was workshopped at the Almeida.” (Yes, that’s the weird part.) I had heard a bit about this a few months ago and e-mailed the theatre company to ask about it, but never heard back from anybody. (The Little Fish Productions website mentions, “Imogen has also written a play (with music) WAY BEYOND BLUE about Jeff Buckley and Eva Cassidy to be directed by Trevor Nunn.”) Therefore I now feel at liberty to state that I think this is the strangest thing I have ever heard of, but if anybody who knows more about the project can persuade me to the contrary, I am willing to listen. **UPDATE: Henrik points out that “Trevor Nunn is unquestionably one of the greatest directors Britain has produced in the 20th century,” and suggests that I should try to keep an open mind about this play. I certainly would be interested in learning more about it, but on the face of it, it doesn’t sound as if it would include a faithful characterization of Eva, who, after all, was a real person….




CD April 22, 2004: Here’s a nice “Eva Mention” in a review of Diana Krall’s new album. Critic Stephan Sullivan of the Washington Times wrote, “Her fans will love it. Jazz purists will hate it.” The “Eva Mention” came at the end: “But if you’re searching for a female vocalist who wails hurtfully and beautifully in a way that cuts to the bone, go get yourself some Eva Cassidy.”


US Sandy in Cincinnati wrote to tell me about Grace Griffith’s performance on “Woodsongs” (http://www.woodsongs.org), which is explained in more detail on the “Grace Griffith Page.” Sandy says, “WoodSongs is not really a concert. It is a one hour radio broadcast that involves interviews, conversation and live performance, much on the order of Garrison Keillor and the Prairie Home Companion show. The show is broadcast live over the radio and the internet at the time of taping. Woodsongs was started by folksinger Michael Jonathon, and is reportedly the ‘world’s first weekly, multi-camera series broadcast on the web’… music history made by syndicated radio show!” Here’s the Eva connection: Sandy tells me, “In addition to his other talents, the moderator of this show , Michael Jonathon has also written two books. His most recent offering, published 2003, is called ‘WoodSongs Two, A Folksinger’s Social Commentary.’ If you purchase the book (which I did) you also get one of his CD’s with his songs. The most important aspect of this book however, is that he has included a lovely chapter about Eva Cassidy…. (Pages 141 – 148.) He tells the story of her life in his own beautifully descriptive words, using the spirit and courage exemplified by her life to inspire other struggling performers in the field of folk music. At the conclusion of the chapter on Eva he writes: ‘I can’t help but wonder, I can’t help but be moved, by the irony of Eva’s journey. Could she ever have imagined, the day she sat in that studio and sang a few songs into the mic, that her voice would eventually be heard throughout the world when at the time she could barely even get a gig? Could she have imagined, the day she sat alone in the doctor’s office after being told the news of her cancer, that years later a folksinger in a farmhouse would be writing about her life and music? Could she have imagined, the night she sang her last song in a smoky club in Washington, DC, knowing that she did not have much longer to live, that her voice would indeed become a great legacy and a brilliant statement for artist around the world? That’s why we should never take our art for granted… Always do your best. Because you never know who will end up listening.‘”


CD Here’s a lovely article about Eva on the EFolkMusic.com website, written by Kevin Howlett of the BBC. Kevin is a wonderful writer and if when you read this you catch some echoes of what Terry Wogan said in the BBC radio documentary, it’s because Kevin wrote the script! Thanks to Henrik for this link. Kevin begins, “If you love music, the kind of music that will enrich your life, then you have to love the music of Eva Cassidy.”


January 22, 2004: This is great — An article about Eva from PRAVDA!!!! As far as I know, this is the first Russian media mention. The article, entitled “True talent cannot be silenced,” is written by David R. Hoffman. Hoffman, the legal editor for Pravda.ru and a resident of Indiana, kindly gave me permission to reprint the entire article on this website, which I will do after the Pravda.ru link has expired. (Whoops, missed my chance. It’s gone.)




US EVA MENTION: Today’s Washington Post “Weekend Section” (Nov. 20, 2003) has a major article by Richard Harrington about locally-recorded live albums. The first paragraph is about Eva: ‘In recent years, the most famous live album originating from Washington has been Eva Cassidy’s “Live at Blues Alley.” It was recorded there partly for the cachet of being associated with one of America’s best-known jazz clubs, and Cassidy herself picked up the costs for what was the only solo album released in her lifetime. It sold only a few hundred copies locally before her death in 1996, but has sold several hundred thousand copies since its 1997 reissue on the Blix Street label became, with the “Songbird” album, the cornerstone of her posthumous success.’ Here’s the link to the entire article. As a “sidebar” to the main article, Harrington also selected A Choice D.C. Dozen of the best local live albums. LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY is listed first, with a picture of the album cover, in the print edition. (Note: You may have to endure a very brief “registration” process with the Post in order to read these articles. I myself dislike registries, so I usually claim to be a male born in 1929, living at the zip code of 20566, which happens to be the unique zip code of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.)



Sweden Great news from Sweden — The long-promised article about Eva in the magazine Amelia is now available (January 2004). Torbjörn writes, “I have just bought a copy and started to translate the article. There are four pictures and almost four pages. It is a wonderful homage to Eva with as always some minor faults – but who cares? …Amelia is the largest woman magazine in Sweden. It is published fortnightly. This edition was issued yesterday.” On the cover of the magazine, Torbjörn tells me, is a photo of “a female cook, named Tina (Nordström). She is a TV celebrity in Sweden. Everybody knows her.” On the front page it says “EVA CASSIDY / Read her unbelievable story.”

Here is Torbjörn’s translation of the beginning of the article, which was written by Maria Brander: “It started with a shaky amateur video. And, her voice, of course. After that we got stuck, like all the rest. Seven years after her death, Eva Cassidy has reached cult status. More than 350 000 records sold – just in Sweden. But who was, really, this shy singer, now acknowledged by the greatest artists?”


US HERE’S A NICE EVA MENTION: Jaimee Rose of the Arizona Republic writes about Eva Cassidy in her column “The Yes List” on January 16, 2004. “Jaimee Rose is obsessed with her Love Actually soundtrack, a Christmas gift from Mr. Wonderful. Or, more accurately, she is smitten with track six, Songbird, by Eva Cassidy, an unbelievable artist who died in 1996 from melanoma. Jaimee has decided that Eva’s songbird is the most romantic, purely beautiful song in the history of Earth and has had it on replay for days (sorry, neighbors). Jaimee is now stalking all of Cassidy’s tunes, and they’re fabulous.” Thanks to Henrik in Denmark and Don in Canada for sending me this link. Thanks also to “Love Actually” writer and director Richard Curtis for choosing Eva’s song for the movie!


AustraliaAnthony in Australia has scans of two excellent articles about Eva, available to read through the links below. One is the “You Magazine” from The Mail on Sunday, the August 10th 2003 issue. It is an interview with Eva’s mother which was promoting what was the upcoming release of American Tune: You Magazine Part One and You Magazine Part Two.

The other article is from the Sunday Telegraph in Sydney (5th October 2003). Anthony writes, ‘It too was in one of those supplement magazines, this one called amazingly enough “The Sunday Magazine”. The cover of the story had Elvis Presley on it with the title of “Dead Rich – When death is a good career move”. And the title of the actual article is called “The Grateful Dead”. It had a whole bundle of dead celebrities and how their careers have taken on a life of their own since they died. I’ve only scanned the first 2 pages of the article because everything about Eva was in that including the main picture that went along with the story. Click here to read it.


US Columnist Michelle Miller of the St. Petersburg Times in Florida writes that Eva is her all-time favorite singer. In her column on October 6th, 2003, she first complains about US commercial radio (“We play the same songs over and over and over again, all the time!”), then praises the alternative public radio station, which introduced her to artists such as Eva: “Tampa Bay’s WMNF (88.5) played a few selections on its New Release Show, and I was hooked. I pulled off the road so I could write her name down, then ordered the CD online that day. Others who are fans of the late singer can likely tell you the first time they heard her captivating voice. It’s one of those defining moments. One I’d wager hasn’t happened yet on commercial radio.”


UK September 2003: The London Times has a brief Eva mention today. Nigel writes, ‘She’s referred to in a review of Dido’s new album. The review says of Dido “At her best, she has that Eva Cassidy ability to make time stand still.” Personally I don’t think she’s a patch on Eva but I know what they mean. See the article at the Times website .


Germany This is an article about Eva from a German website (another discovery of Doug’s). Henrik says there’s nothing especially new, but gave me a couple of nice quotes in English translation: ‘Yet what is special about Cassidy is not the tragedy of her short life. This fact is not even utilized to boost sales figures; announcing a new release is all it takes. What is fascinating is her magically moving voice, her unusual, almost meditative interpretations of classics like “Yesterday” and “Over The Rainbow”, which invariably make people cock their ears, whenever her voice is heard on the radio.’


UK October 2003: The new issue of Marie Claire magazine in the UK has an article about Eva in its “Life Stories” section. The heading is “Eva Cassidy, Voice of an Angel.” Michael Hogan wrote the article. It’s a very nice article, though there’s not really anything new in it. Please note that the photo of Eva singing with a band is NOT of the “Eva Cassidy Band.” The friends in the photo with Eva are Chris Izzi, Larry Melton, and Joe Knaggs. This is the second time this photo has been mislabelled, and I wish somebody would check these things.


UK The British tabloid, the Daily Mirror, ran a big story about Eva on Saturday, August 30th, 2003. The headline reads, “Eva wouldn’t accept she was beautiful or talented..all she ever wanted was to sing.” The article focuses more on Eva’s personal life than on her music — pretty much the opposite of the approach I take on this website. Here’s a quote from the Mirror article, by Tanith Carey: ‘Chris remains modest about his contribution to her legacy. He credits another singer, Grace Griffith, who sent Eva’s songs to her own record label, Blix Street, for the career break Eva had been waiting all her life for. But he is angry at any suggestion that Eva achieved success only because she is dead. “Most people don’t even know that she is dead when they hear her,” he says. “If she is put on a pedestal, maybe that’s a good thing.” The fact remains that thanks to his efforts millions of record buyers get comfort from the songs he encouraged Eva to sing in the studio and in public. But there is no comfort for Chris. “Once, I craved music,” he says. “But because there is no one better than Eva and no one can compare to her I can’t listen to it any more.” ‘


Sweden August 18th, 2003: Today’s issue of Svenska Dagbladet has a big article about Eva, written by Harry Amster. Our star translator, Henrik, just sent me the article in English. Thanks, Henrik! Some excerpts:

Producer and ex-boyfriend Chris Biondo loves her voice but does not think the singer would have approved of this release.
– No, she was a perfectionist and would no doubt have wanted to record new versions.

Eva Cassidy’s career is a bit strange as her breakthrough only came after her death in 1996, when she was just thirty-three. Since then the shy singer has sold millions of albums worldwide and 80,000 units in Sweden.

Chris Biondo has a recording studio in his own house where he used to record local bands. In 1986, Eva Cassidy, then 23 years old, was going to do the vocal tracks for the soft rock group Method Actor. But she was so nervous she was afraid to enter the studio.
– I went out to her, and it got a little tense between us, because I was so direct. But we became friends during the recording sessions. When she sang her harmonies I realized that she was the best female vocalist I had ever worked with.
Four years later they became a couple and moved together. Their relationship lasted three years, but their collaboration continued even after it broke up.
– She became my best friend though it was hard to be friends with someone you loved. I wanted to marry her, but she said no and wanted to be independent.

How would you describe her?
– Her best trait was that she never wanted to say anything bad about anybody. She was considerate, very shy and didn’t feel at ease in a crowd. But once you got to know her, she was more outgoing. She never understood how good she was.

Was she really as shy as they say?
– Yes, instead of talking to the audience she would stare into the floor. She was afraid she might say something stupid.
Chris Biondo played the bass on the songs just released and remembers what a high time they had playing these live performances caught on tape, especially on those occasions when Fleetwood Mac drummer Mick Fleetwood sat in.
– I just couldn’t get over the fact that one of the most successful musicians ever was playing with us in a club with an audience of six people. It was bizarre. He really liked Eva Cassidy.

Does it get your goat when ‘The Independent on Sunday’ in its review of the record says that Eva Cassidy is an ‘incredibly talented karaoke singer’?
– Millions cannot be so mistaken about Eva when they love her voice. The guy who wrote that is an idiot, says an exasperated Chris Biondo.


UK Early August, 2003:
The Mail On Sunday contains two articles about Eva. One is a feature story in the “You Magazine” supplement. The other is a review of the new album, in the main part of the paper. The review by Tim deLisle states, “There is more to the Cassidy phenomenon than her tragedy. Her fans are responding to that warm, strong voice, to her homeliness and freedom from industry varnish, and her excellent, wide-ranging taste….” (I wish I could reprint the whole review, but only quotes are permissible as “fair use.”)

The “You Magazine” feature story carries the headline “For the Love of Eva: It was only after her death seven years ago at 33 that Eva Cassidy became a star. As her latest posthumous album is released, Eva’s mother tells Adriaane Pielou that her daughter’s success is thanks to her British fans — and Terry Wogan.” The article is based on an interview with Barbara Cassidy from a couple of months ago.


UK There is an article about Eva in the August 9 (2003) issue of the Weekly News. It’s a wonderful article. I’ll quote from Joe’s description of it, since he expressed himself so well: ‘Lovely smiling photograph of Eva on the front page of the paper – those piercing eyes Eva has!! – The whole of page 3 is devoted to Eva – the heading is “Tragic songbird moves millions to tears – Eva Cassidy’s perfect voice captivated the world – but only after her death.” The main article is devoted to an interview with Chris Biondo – with a photo of Eva and Chris and one with Eva on her own (the same one which is on the front page). There are contributions from Barbara and Hugh – Barbara speaks of her daughter “She was a very, very special person – but not only just to me – Now the whole world is beginning to realise it.” There is a competition to win AMERICAN TUNE. The just turned 65 old TOG and his partner in crime Pauly have a contribution along with a photograph of the two of them – as usual the two of them do Eva proud and speak of her so glowingly – couple of great lads. And finally and by no means the least in my view – a mention of your good self where it says “Thanks to Eva’s cousin Laura Bligh for helping track down this photo of Eva and Chris. There’s heaps of information about the singer on Laura’s excellent website – www.evacassidy.org.”‘


US Dave in Pennsylvania (yes, this time it’s Dave, not Doug) writes, “Thought you would be interested to hear about a small write-up about Eva in the July 2003 issue of Jazziz magazine(page 23); picture of her, about half a column of print; the dates seem to be a little out of whack but they say nice things and have the quote from Bruce Lundvall of Blue Note. It’s nice to see her mentioned in a major jazz publication; perhaps Jazztimes or Downbeat next.”


UK Here’s one from Paul in Wales: ‘The June issue of Guitarist magazine (“the guitar players bible”)includes a feature, GIRLS ALOUD, where 11 “fine female guitar players” are profiled. The article is concluded with the magazine listing their “Top 25 girl guitar albums.” You-know-who is included for
Songbird. The text reads, verbatim; “We all know the heart rending story of Cassidy’s posthumous success. But this album, with its inventive and eclectic mix of superbly sung covers, is a gem. Over The Rainbow and Fields Of Gold stand out, but there’s not a bad
track. And Eva could play that guitar.” Keith Grimes gets a mention as the credited guitarist.’


Australia First posted June 2003: Australia’s Barfly magazine website has two excellent reviews of Eva Cassidy album, from critic Tony Hillier. One is of SONGBIRD, the other of IMAGINE. Thanks to Henrik for these links. Here’s a quote: “I’ve listened to and reviewed a lot of music over the years, but few albums have touched me as profoundly as Eva Cassidy’s. Cassidy’s achingly beautiful, straight from the heart, crystalline singing has an emotional tug that is tear inducing; her voice has the capacity to send shivers down the spine and make the hairs on the nape stand bolt upright.”


CD May 14, 2003: “Dr. Ink” writes
a review of THE OTHER SIDE on the journalism website Poynter.org. “Doc learns here that white girls can sing with soul….”


France Henrik in Denmark found a new French review of SONGBIRD. Here is a quotable excerpt in translation: ‘Whether she sings country, pop or gospel (“Oh, I had a golden thread”) it is all filtered through her crystalline and clear voice to reemerge invariably polished and purified. But Eva Cassidy did more than interpret: through her incessant exploration of phrasing she reinvents the songs…On hearing a sublime voice one often says that it defies criticism, but let us try nonetheless. Accompanied only by her guitar, her achingly beautiful voice transforms “Autumn leaves” (“Les feuilles mortes” by Prévert et Kosma) into a devout prayer, changes the lead of Sting’s “Fields of gold” into gold.’


 US FROM GRAMMY.COM: In the April 7, 2003, issue of Grammy Magazine, a feature article by Dave Helland mentions Eva. The title of the article is Hope I Buy Before I Get Old: Over 45 set look to NPR, PBS and, yes, the Wall Street Journal as tastemakers. In the first paragraph, Helland writes, “When Nancy and Clara visited Chicago, their hostess played Eve Cassidy’s SONGBIRD for them; when they went to Borders the next day the clerk persuaded them not only to both buy all of Cassidy’s discs but to add CDs by Norah Jones and Lucy Kaplansky to their piles.”


US OOOOH, this is a good one. It’s an article from UPI (United Press International), which seems to be a regular jazz column by Ken Franckling. The critic writes about how artists are “pigeonholed,” then discusses Norah Jones’s recent success. Then he writes,

‘Lundvall’s brilliant decision to sign Jones rather than let the voice find its way to another label — or go unsigned altogether — undoubtedly is rooted in the one that did get away. Back in the early 1990s, Lundvall had a chance to sign Eva Cassidy but it never happened because he couldn’t figure a way to fit her into his jazz niche. So away went Eva, back to suburban Washington, D.C., dividing her time between work at a local garden shop, painting and singing songs she loved for a rather small but devoted coterie of fans.

Cassidy died from melanoma at age 33 in 1996, before the music world at-large got to know her. But a wave of recordings from the Los Angeles-based Blix Street label, including the splendid compilation “Songbird” and “Live at Blues Alley,” brought posthumous success, selling in the millions, at first largely by word of mouth.

They showed that without a doubt, and without hype or category, Eva Cassidy was blessed with one of the finest voices of the 20th century. Period.’

The article continues, but I can’t quote it all here, so follow the link and read it.


Belgium May 3, 2003: The article about Eva Cassidy is in today’s issue of Belgium’s national Flemish newspaper Le Standaard. The headline is “Eva Cassidy komt tot leven,” and the article’s author is Mario Danneels. It looks as if the article is available to read on-line but some kind of paid registration is required. Please let me know if anybody sees this article and can translate the best bits of it for me, or send me a scan, or anything! I hope Belgium will be the latest country to be “conquered” by Eva Cassidy’s wonderful voice.

I have discovered that the Eva article is in the “magazine” section of today’s paper. I was able to see the page layout here: Follow the link, then look at the right near the bottom for “DSMagazine.” The article is on pages 22 and 23, which you can view but (unless your monitor is better than mine) not really read. The layout looks great — I see that several pages from the Songbird book are depicted, and the cover photo from EVA BY HEART, and the snapshot of Eva and Chris in sunglasses in front of his studio in Glenn Dale, and a pull-quote that sounds familiar: “Ik ben Madonna niet, ik ben Janet Jackson niet, ik ben Eva….”

 Belgium May 15, 2003: Henrik in Denmark has translated the Belgian article from Le Standaard for us. Thank you to him and to the author, Mario Danneels! The title of the article in English is “Eva Cassidy comes to life”. Here are three great quotes:

‘The success of the American singer Eva Cassidy is one of the most improbable tales of recent music history. When she died, she was only known to a small group of fans in non-commercial jazz and blues circles in Washington. Today her albums sell in millions, and British music critics consider her voice one of the best of the preceding century. And although a grainy amateur video is the only recording that exists of Cassidy’s version of Judy Garland’s classic Over the Rainbow, it became the most requested “video” in the history of the legendary music program Top of the Pops.’

[Chris Biondo:] “‘I have worked with many artists in my studio, but I have never heard anyone sing as well as Eva, neither outside the studio. In my opinion Eva is the best singer that ever lived. Because she was a simple little girl with an extraordinary talent, but with a modest aim: to give small-scale performances in order to earn a living. She did not want to outdo anybody, to put herself on a pedestal or to win any competitions. She just wanted to sing out of her love of music, and then only songs that meant something to her. Look at photos of Eva. She never tries to look flashy, just the opposite. Her music and her art came from her heart; she lived a life in which the word “ego” had no meaning. People hear that honesty.'”

“Ten minutes after they had played Eva Cassidy on the radio for the first time, BBC had received more than a hundred e-mails. One person asked if they would announce it loud and clear next time they played it, so that she would not have to pull over. Martin Jennings kept pestering BBC television about Eva’s music. But Top of the Pops producer Mark Hagen was not impressed by the poor recording of Over the Rainbow. However, four years after Cassidy’s death he finally gave in. ‘We put it at the very end of the show, so that it wouldn’t be a complete disaster if all the viewers left’. The response was quite different: ‘We had never before received so many requests for a repeat; and as for the video, it was totally different from all those millions of expensive videos that you see on MTV: a little girl with a guitar who sits on a stool for four and a half minute and sings a song. In fact she does not just sing, she thinks the number, she feels it. That’s why she is such a talent’.”


France April 11, 2003: Jacques in France sent me a scan of the three-star review of SONGBIRD in the current issue of the French Rolling Stone magazine. Thanks, Jacques! The review was written by another Jacques, Jacques Bremond. Jacques-the-Eva-fan writes, ‘He concludes by these words : “In memory of a short-lived career, this album pays tribute to a real singer”.’


UK April 9, 2003: Alan in Sydney writes, ‘I have just seen the April/May 2003 issue of the British magazine “The Singer.” It has a review on p.33 of “Time After Time” which it says has been re-released. The reviewer Antonia Couling says of the album “…one can only wonder at the woman’s vocal brilliance.” She also writes of Eva’s “amazing emotional and spiritual level that so many have responded to since her posthumous discovery.” ‘


US April 1, 2003: There was a brief mention of Eva Cassidy in the Chicago Tribune on March 30th, in an article by Maureen Ryan, entitled “Music industry hanging its hopes on over-40 set’s buying power.” (Their site requires registration, so I will not give a link.) Here’s the pertinent paragraph:

‘Television may help the big shots reignite their careers, but non-commercial radio is helping a much wider range of artists gain notice. “One of the best outlets for approaching the Baby Boomer customer has been public radio,” says Tower Records’ Camacho. “An NPR feature on Eva Cassidy skyrocketed her sales. . . . I think that is one way we’re selling music to a customer that is not listening to traditional radio.” “Those things, I think, are money in the bank, especially for this [older] audience,” Hochkeppel says of Jones’ NPR coverage. “It’s a huge and very trustful audience.” ‘


France March 17, 2003: Ffran wrote in the Guestbook, “Eva was mentioned during a televison programme on French television today, Sunday. The report talked of the Eva “phenomenon”, and of the millions of albums sold. I wished thay had talked a little more about her talent as the reason behind this phenomenon! There’s no smoke without fire, so they say. And with Eva there is no phenomenon without a wonderful talent.” Andrew at Hot Records tells me that SONGBIRD was released in France this week. He wrote, “I gather the TV seen was a Sunday morning show on Channel 5, that’s all I know I’m afraid.”


US Late February, 2003: From “Voice of America News”: February 27, 2003: Phoebe Zimmerman talks about Eva Cassidy in the show “American Mosaic.” The link takes you to a transcript of the program, which will be broadcast internationally on February 28th, 2003.


US Feb. 22, 2003: Julie in the US writes, ‘I received Sunday’s “Parade” section of the “Washington Post” on Friday evening. Inside the cover page is a column entitled Walter Scott’s Personality Parade. People write in to ask questions about celebrities. A man from Topeka, Kansas commented that Michelle Kwan often skates to a beautiful song called “Fields of Gold” and he wanted to know who the fantastic singer was. The answer mentioned Eva died of melanoma in 1996, before she was widely appreciated. The rest of the answer goes on to say that Chris Biondo promoted her work and produced her earliest recordings and that Bill Straw of Blix Street Records released “Songbird” in 1998 and that it went gold and had Eva’s version of Fields of Gold.’

Parade is a color supplement magazine that is distributed as part of the Sunday paper in many, many newspapers in the United States (including the Washington Post). In fact, according to my publicist friend Katherine, its circulation is 36 million: “Parade is the largest circulation periodical in the country (which probably means in the world).”


bbcFrom Les in the UK: ‘Radio Times, the BBC’s listings magazine, has a question and answer service for readers. This is an extract from the current issue:

Q: Could you please tell me who sang Fields of Gold as heard on the ice-skating gala after the Winter Olympics, and more recently on Grange Hill? R Cook, Colchester. A: Fields of Gold is from the late Eva Cassidy’s Songbird album.

Radio Times is the UK’s second biggest selling magazine, with a readership approaching 5 million. Grange Hill is a popular BBC school-based soap for kids.”


CD Feb. 2003: Here’s a new review of IMAGINE by Christine LaPado, on the website http://www.newsreview.com. “Eva Cassidy is a lovely gem truly worth discovering.”


US Saturday, February 1: “The Song We Choose to Sing” is the title of a column in today’s Kansas City Star. The author, Kimberly Morrow, is one of ten Kansas City residents chosen to be a guest columnist at the paper during 2003. In her debut column, she writes about how the music people choose to listen to can affect their world view. Eva Cassidy’s music is used as an example of “strength of character wrought through adversity that makes the seemingly insurmountable entirely possible.” Kimberly is one of the interesting people I have enjoyed “meeting” through my job as webmaster here. She wrote that she lobbied heavily for the Star to publish this column during the weekend of Eva’s birthday — thanks, Kimberly!




Norway December 2002: Henrik in Denmark writes, “Three journalists at the Norwegian newspaper BA have each drawn up a top
ten list of this year’s best albums.
One of them includes IMAGINE as No. eight on his list and notes that “She died six
years ago, but the records keep on coming. Eva Cassidy sings with so much empathy and soul that it could make a stone cry.”


US UK LATE DECEMBER, 2002: Four Eva albums are listed in the Amazon.com “BEST OF 2002” which is subtitled “Top 100 Customers’ Favorites.” SONGBIRD is #14, IMAGINE is #33, TIME AFTER TIME is #48, and LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY is #67. On the equivalent list on Amazon.co.uk, SONGBIRD is #16, and IMAGINE is #19. Those two albums and TIME AFTER TIME are all among the top ten “Folk and World Music” bestsellers on Amazon.co.uk. (On the Amazon.com bestselling Folk albums, IMAGINE is #2.)

US Flag Autumn 2002: Do any of you live in the area of Nashville, Tennessee? A new Nashville-area music magazine, SHAKE!, has a very extensive article about Eva in their autumn issue. It was written by the editor, Chris P. James. SHAKE! is distributed free in the Nashville area; you can probably find it at music stores and libraries. Eva’s picture is on the cover, so look for her face and pick up a copy if you live in the right part of the world! If you would like to receive a copy in the mail, send $5 to Chris P. James, Editor, SHAKE! Magazine,572 Janice Drive, Antioch, TN 37013 USA.

‘It has now been over six years since Cassidy performed or recorded anything new. The only video that exists is grainy footage shot by Brian McCulley of one of her Blues Alley performances. There simply isn’t the usual promotional material to get the artist out into the mainstream world. And yet she keeps selling more and more records. The fact that Eva was so studio oriented in her approach toward music results in most of her live recordings being presentable. They are not perfect masters but the mix is nearly always fine. “We were the only band I’ve ever been in where people told us to turn up,” says Keith Grimes. Eva’s voice is nicely audible above the musical accompaniment. Chris Biondo describes any imperfections as a miniscule distraction. “As long as she was singing good, the rest of it doesn’t matter,” he said. “And she always sang good.” There’s still a backlog of Eva Cassidy material. Among the recordings not released are these songs: “True Colors,” “Ain’t Doing Too Bad,” “Next Time You See Me,” “It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing,” “Son of a Preacher Man,” “Take My Breath Away,” “Darken World,” “Yesterday,” and “American Tune.”

‘Many reviewers and columnists have claimed Eva’s forte was her ability to sing jazz standards and classic rhythm and blues. Though she’s fine at every style, her readings of gentle folk ballads show off a voice unparalleled. There’s something special about the way she sang without affectations or staginess. But Eva knew when to throw in a lick or two. She delivers a sould and clarity to things like “I Wandered By A Brookside” and “Wayfaring Stranger” that bring chill bumps to the listener. “We saw Fairport Convention in 1990,” recalls Chris Biondo, “and they did that song, Brookside. Eva’s brother, Dan, is friends with them.” Her version of “Danny Boy” is absolutely spellbinding. Eva’s rendition of the deceased soul hearkening and comforting her lover who visits her grave takes on a haunting quality of spiritual power given that she is gone. Her brother’s name being Dan makes the song all the more compelling.

‘A new album, IMAGINE, was recently released, Bill Straw says, “because we need it to keep her story alive.” He plans for more Eva Cassidy albums in the future. “There’s still a lot to sort through and recordings of her performances keep turning up. Obviously we don’t want to go below a certain quality. And we want to go slow, because once it’s gone, it’s gone.” IMAGINE is the first Eva Cassidy CD to make the Billboard Top 200 album chart upon being released. Apparently the word about her great music has finally spread because the CD hit #62 in the September 7th issue and, after dropping to #105 the next week, achieved “greatest climber” status at #32 September 21st. IMAGINE was #1 on the Independent Album Chart October 5th. SONGBIRD has reached #1 on the Pop Catalog album chart.’


U.S. More from Nashville: As a follow-up to their major story about Eva Cassidy in the Fall 2002 issue, SHAKE! Magazine has several items about Eva in its Winter 2003 issue. Are they perhaps a little Eva-obsessed, like so many of us? Not only are there some letters-to-the-Editor about their big Eva article, but also columnist Donna Lynn Rector wrote an article called “I Don’t Buy CDs (Eva Cassidy Revisited),” and Vanessa Duncan reviewed IMAGINE — “I now believe she had the most beautiful voice I have heard…. This is an important artist because the buzz about her music is under the radar. A phenomenon is taking place without the benefit of MTV and other plastic media vehicles. The message, that honest music not only exists but can have enormous impact, is desperately needed in today’s weak popular music market.” In Duncan’s review of PRISONER OF THE HEART, a recent CD release by Eva’s friend Mary Ann Redmond, she wrote more about Eva than about Mary Ann. (“‘Eva taught me that no matter what happens, it’s got to be real,’ says Redmond. ‘You can hear it in every song she sang.’ Paying attention to Cassidy’s approach and being influenced by her is a grat foundation for any vocalist. Mary Ann is fine in her own right….”) SHAKE! Magazine is distributed free in the Nashville area, so pick one up if you get the chance. (I must add that in the “Letter to the Editor” that I wrote, the editor inserted an unrelated sentence in the middle of a paragraph, so that it doesn’t completely make sense. I didn’t write it that way, trust me.)


NPR November 2002: My mother reports hearing a story on NPR on Saturday evening which mentioned Eva (along with some other singers) and discussed her new-found fame. Apparently they also played some excerpts from her albums. Did anybody else hear this story? She was traveling and is not sure which NPR program it was (I am guessing it was Weekend Edition Saturday.) **UPDATE: It was “Weekend Edition,” a story called “Director’s Cuts CD Gift Guide,” and supposedly you can listen to it here. (It didn’t work for me, but I’m having problems with RealAudio.)


Scotland November 2002: David in Scotland sent me a clipping from the Milngavie & Bearsden Herald containing a very telling Eva mention. It’s an article about a young singer: “Schoolgirl Lynn Stewart got a taste of what it’s like to be a pop star when she cut her own CD in a professional recording studio. The 15-year-old from Milngavie sang the Eva Cassidy version of Over the Rainbow, and got an insight into how records are produced after winning a fantastic Herald competition… ‘I chose the song because I watched Stars in Your Eyes and someone sang it. It was beautiful and I thought, wow! I want to sing that song.'” Thanks, David! The article helps me clarify my thoughts about the “Eva imitators.” It’s all a way of spreading the word about Eva, isn’t it! Charlie in Norwich comments, “Seems like there’s a whole generation of young singers growing up with Eva as a major influence, which must be good news. :-)”




Norway November 2002: The Norwegian paper VG had an article about Eva by Tor Milde, based on a recent interview with Chris Biondo. The article included some rather large errors, but that may be attributable to the language barrier! It included a graphic of EVA BY HEART and a very jet-lagged-looking photo of Chris. Henrik in Denmark translated the article; here is an excerpt:

Eva was very unmaterialistic, she was shy and humble towards everybody she met. She grew up in modest circumstances, she was not one to collect worldly goods. Chris is certain that she would not have been able to cope with all aspects of success if she had lived to experience it.

– She would have liked being liked by people, of course, but she would have been afraid of all that success entailed, such as interviews, promotion, tv. But she loved travelling, and she would have loved a place like Oslo. She lived one month in Reykjavik with her brother, and she was overjoyed when she came back home.

– Oslo and the pace here – look out of the window! Everybody’s walking, taking their time, looking around. She would definitely have liked it here. There is too much rush and bustle in Washington.


Danish FlagHenrik in Denmark has translated an article from the Danish tabloid Ekstra Bladet for us. It was written by Allan Lykke Olesen and entitled “Man with a mission.” Thank you, Henrik, for this and all your expert translations!


“‘The moment I heard her voice, I knew I had never heard a better singer,’
Chris Biondo recalls — an experience which most others who hear Eva Cassidy
for the first time will find it easy to understand.

By and by their collaboration also grew into romance, but even though Eva broke their relationship, their friendship and musical collaboration continued until the very end of her life.

‘I was with Eva the day she died. We knew she wasn’t going to live through the night, and she died around midnight on the 2nd of November, 1996. But I had left a few hours earlier. I couldn’t bear to see hear die,’ Chris Biondo
says.

What he experienced with Eva Cassidy has since made him give up his career as a record producer. ‘For twenty years I used to get tapes sent from all sorts of bands and singers who wanted me to produce their records. After I have known Eva this has lost its attraction for me. It is impossible for anyone to be better than her anyway,’ says her friend, who nowadays works as a composer for the National Geographic tv channel in the USA.”


US flagNov. 3, 2002: From the Hattiesburg (Mississippi) American, columnist Kristen Twedt writes about Eva, “‘Songbird’ arrived via UPS a few days later. It is an Eva Cassidy CD of some of the most incredible music I have ever savored. Her melancholic delivery of “Fields of Gold,” originally written and recorded by Sting, claws at my wretched inability to express myself as the author of those lyrics did so well…. She belonged to the music. Her passion and honesty bolstered an incredible talent, which makes it all the more bittersweet that she was so good, yet she never knew the public success her recordings have seen since she passed.”


Union JackThe UK newspaper The Guardian mentioned Eva in an article on October 31, 2002, misleadingly titled “Albums from the Crypt.” Critic Alexis Petridis discusses several posthumous releases, including the music of Jeff Buckley and Tupac Shakur as well as Eva Cassidy: “Her posthumous success began in Britain, the direct result of Terry Wogan repeatedly playing her cover version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow on his Radio 2 breakfast show. Quite aside from any musical worth, that track became viewed as an encapsulation of her tragic story of a life cut short and promise unfulfilled. There’s an undeniable emotional appeal in hearing an artist who you know died in obscurity singing a song about hope and a mystical world beyond everyday life. ” This article later appeared in Australia’s The Age.


irish flag us flagAn Irish-American newspaper, Irish Echo, ran this article about Eva on October 16th, 2002. The writer, Earle Hitchner, also wrote the excellent feature story that ran in the Wall Street Journal last month. It was interesting to read a bit about Eva’s Irish ancestry, and I love Hitchner’s concluding paragraph: “Unlike Mariah, Celine, and Cher, Cassidy was no diva. There was no flash, hype, or compromise. She sang what she loved — rock, pop, folk, jazz, soul, standards — and commerce be damned. Now commerce comes to Cassidy, after death, her choices unchanged, her terms intact.”


October 2002: Here’s a nice review of SONGBIRD from JAM (Jazz Ambassadors Monthly), a magazine out of Kansas City. Mike Metheny is the critic. “Jazz, blues, folk, pop, tender ballads and soaring soul… you name it, Cassidy nailed it. Hers is timeless music that still turns heads and inspires hearts, should be required listening for any serious singer regardless of genre, and most of all, tells the evocative story of greatness documented for posterity.”


October 5, 2002: An article from Australia, on a website called “The Age,” is based on an interview with Chris Biondo, “Eva’s biggest fan.” One of the things Chris discusses in that interview is how little money Eva earned as a musician: “She never, ever in her life made more than $250 for a gig…. More often than not, she would make $60 to $80. So she wasn’t somebody who I would say was even middle-class in her earnings.”


Doug in Pennsylvania spotted an article about Eva in a music magazine. ‘It would almost be easy to miss the Eva article in the fall issue of “Women Who Rock” (with cover girl Tori Amos). The name “Eva Cassidy” is on the cover, all right. But the article is not listed in the index and it is, in fact, on the very last page. But nice job by author Mike Mueller, though; even for not having much that has not already been written. This is the kind of not quite mainstream magazine that I had to find at Borders. Even Walden did not have it. Don’t know if this magazine has a web site.’


From a local Maryland newspaper chain, here is a lovely article by Christina Findlay entitled Eva’s Legacy. Some of you will recall that this reporter posted a message in the Guestbook looking for Eva fans who live in Prince George’s County. The article includes some great quotes from website regular Tony Lamantia and an excerpt from a recent Guestbook entry by Eric in Silver Spring. If you live in Maryland, pick up a copy — the paper has many names depending on the locality, but the Gazette publishes all of them. In Bowie, it’s the Bowie Star. Something that was news to me, in the article: “A chance phone call with Cassidy’s parents, Barbara and Hugh, clued me in to something I’d missed until now. On Saturday, Bowie dedicated its 6th annual Arts Expo at Allen Pond Park to its hometown star, and County Councilwoman Audrey Scott read a proclamation praising Cassidy.”


The Hollywood Reporter ran this item on September 12th: “Cassidy’s ‘Songbird’ soars to platinum sales in Europe” is the headline. It reports that SONGBIRD reached 1 million in European sales in August, 2002.


September 2002: Politiken, one of Denmark’s largest newspapers, published a review of IMAGINE this past week. The critic is Dorte Hygum Sørensen. Knowing that I do not read Danish, Henrik sent me a translation; here are a few quotes: “Her voice has gone straight to the top of the American Billboard ‘Independent Albums’ chart. In England, Australia and Germany, Eva Cassidy tops the sales charts with a vocal so honest and clear that it makes you shiver the first time you hear it.” Also, “Eva Cassidy is so good that you actually become angry. It makes no sense that something so beautiful should die so early. This is something that should have been cherished while it was still there. This is what Eva Cassidy reminds us of.”


Here’s a nice one from Canada, courtesy of Todd, which cheered me up at a time I needed it! It was in the Montreal Gazette on August 28, 2002, written by Donna Nebenzahl. He typed out the beginning of it for us:
“My heart for a song

Listen to an Eva Cassidy recording and you might never be the same

There are few occasions in life when you have an experience so intensely moving that words fail.
Maybe the birth of a child, or a reunion with a loved one. So imagine my surprise the other day, when a
grainy TV film clip of a young woman with a guitar, singing an old standard, caught my heart and flipped it
right over.

The tune and the lyrics of Somewhere Over the Rainbow are very familiar to me. But I had never, ever,
heard the song before. Because in this live performance the young woman sang in such a pure, golden
voice and she so felt those words that her perfect pitch and unique styling created an entirely new song. It
was impossible to do anything but listen, in fact strain to listen to every moment, like a heartbeat.

As she has done to millions around the world, Eva Cassidy touched something deep inside me. And I swear I will never be the same.”


There was an article about Eva in the Daily Mail today (Friday, August 23rd). Matt sent me a scan (thanks, Matt!). It’s an excellent article, based on listening to the album and interviewing Chris Biondo. It’s titled ‘SONGBIRD WHO FLEW TOO SOON’ by Adrian Thrills. Audrey describes it as “very complimentary, with a beautiful picture of Eva.” A quote: ” ‘If she had lived, she would have covered every style of music,’ Biondo says. ‘And she’d have done them better than anybody else. All we got, with the recordings she made, was a sneak preview.’ ”
Also, in case you missed it, last Sunday there was a big spread in the Mail on Sunday colour supplement. See if you can still find a copy, from a news stand or a friend! It is a pity that the Mail’s website is so useless.


Steve Huey wrote an excellent and comprehensive article about Eva and her music for the All Music Guide, which you can read

here
.

More news from Sweden, thanks to Torbjörn: ‘I just found a review/article in our largest daily morning paper, Dagens Nyheter, with the headline: “Eva fascinates with her voice.” The critic is P O Tidholm. The Eva Cassidy story is told in short ending with a few lines about IMAGINE:

“But most of all Eva Cassidy pleases her audience, all those who have heard her and come to love her gentle interpretations of classical songs. On IMAGINE she sings songs by John Lennon, Paul Anka, Sandy Denny and Stevie Wonder. It’s a disparate mixture of
songs which she turns into her own with her remarkably sure and sincere voice. Too bad it gets a bit bombastic sometimes. The instrumentation is not altogether tasteful. She is best solo with her acoustic guitar. Then even a worn-out song like Danny Boy comes to life.”


From Joe in Scotland: ‘Article in the Scotsman daily newspaper today by William Lyons: “Cassidy Tops Charts again – six years after her death” – Has a photo of Eva and details Eva’s background and Eva’s CD releases.’ Thanks, Joe!

Follow this link to read the transcript from the ABC (Australia) “7:30 Report” interview with Chris Biondo. Thank you to Ross for this link! A quote: “‘I think it’s a lesson for people that do music. Do it for the right reasons.
I run a recording studio and for 20 years people would come and they would say they would do this or do that because they thought people wanted to hear that. And most of the time when people do things because they think that’s what people want to hear, they suck. Because there’s no emotional connection with what they’re doing. They’re just doing a pantomime. They’re not trying anything that means anything. I think if somebody was out there and they heard Eva and said, “here’s a girl who went to number one, who didn’t try to go to number one but got there because she sings so good and she didn’t try do things because she thought that’s what people wanted to hear.” Maybe they’ll do things for the right reasons, maybe they’ll sit down and they’ll try to really connect, or find good music, or sing good music.”

The News Tribune in Tacoma, Washington, has a short article about Eva and Blix Street Records, which is now located in nearby Gig Harbor, WA. Click here to read it. A quote: ‘As with Cassidy’s other posthumous releases, the disc includes a brief bio; it’s obvious that not everyone reads it. “We still get calls, people trying to book her for this or that,” Straw said. “They just don’t bother to read the liner notes.”‘


An article about Hot Records, entitled Hot Sounds from the Shed, was in the Daily Telegraph on August 17th, 2002. The article wonders if the Sussex village of Angmering will be “the new Nashville”! The Telegraph also has a link to my website. Here’s a quote from Martin Jennings, in the article: ‘ “We’re an owner-operated label,” he says. “We take great pride in doing a proper job, especially in distribution. We find out who wants what and get it to them the next day. I’ve always tried to stay true to something – that’s why I think we’ve succeeded. I question everything, which drives everyone mad, but I think that swimming against the tide makes you a good swimmer.” ‘


The magazine “Film and Video” has an article about the Eva Cassidy videos in their August issue. The headline reads, Metro Broadcast Repairs Video Footage for New Eva Cassidy Single / “Archangel” from Snell & Wilcox provides new luster to rare video. If you’re remotely interested in technical things, you’ll want to read this article, which Doug in Pennsylvania discovered. A quote: ‘According to Metro Broadcast’s Technical Operations Manager, Mike Smith, “The Eva Cassidy project is a fine example of what we can do with Archangel. Viewers can now concentrate fully on the music without being distracted by the poor visual quality of the original video material. Moreover, it’s a delightful, and poignant, performance.” ‘


August 18, 2002: From Laura T. in the UK: ‘In the Mail on Sunday today (probably UK’s biggest selling paper), in its colour supplement ‘Night and Day’, there’s a big 4-page spread on Eva. The article’s entitled ‘Forever Young’. The standfirst reads: “Singer Eva Cassidy dies in obscurity, aged 33. Here, her partner Chris Biondo, exclusively reveals how he fought to make her album, Songbird, a huge worldwide hit. By Adam Sweeting.” There’s a double-page spread of Eva pictures and then two pages of article, also including pictures.’ I’m trying to find a link to this one, and Laura says she’ll mail me a copy too. Chris and Eva wouldn’t have described themselves as “partners”… we’ll see how accurate the rest of the article is. UPDATE: It turned out to be a very good article. See if you can find a copy somewhere, it’s worth seeking out.


August 18, 2002: In the Sunday Arts Section of the Washington Post, a review by Richard Harrington, “A Posthumous Push for Hit CDs” in which he calls IMAGINE “quietly sublime.” Here’s what he says about my favorite “Danny Boy”: ‘The closing track, “Danny Boy,” that much-abused sentimental ballad, is transformed by Cassidy’s unaffected delivery. You imagine her singing it to her younger brother, Dan, resisting all the cliches that have attached to it over the years. It becomes not only listenable again, but unforgettable.’


UKAug. 16, 2002: The British newspaper The Independent has a review of IMAGINE in today’s paper. The review (click here to read it all) was written by critic Andy Gill. ‘…It’s the folksier performances, such as Sandy Denny’s “Who Knows Where the Time Goes?”, and her soulful solo treatment of standards such as “Imagine” and “It Doesn’t Matter Any More” that reveal Cassidy’s natural warmth: her gentle blues inflections on the latter bestow a pained resignation, while her impassioned simplicity even de-saccharinises “Tennessee Waltz”. ‘


Saturday, August 10th: There is a nice article about Eva in the Washington Times today. The title is “Eva Cassidy’s Rise to Fame,” written by Stephanie Casler. The article compares Eva’s posthumous fame with the life cycle of the Phoenix. A quote: “Almost overnight, a painfully shy, simple woman gifted with an angelic voice became a full-fledged legend, a marked contrast from her withdrawn life.”


The August 3rd issue of MUSIC WEEK includes a photo of Terry Wogan, Paul Walters, and Chris Biondo, with a paragraph reading as follows: “Few people played a more crucial part in turning the late Eva Cassidy into one of the nation’s favourite vocalists than Radio Two’s breakfast king Terry Wogan and his producer Paul Walters. So it was a fitting moment indeed last week when Cassidy’s partner and musical collaborator Chris Biondo paid a visit to the pair to offer his own personal thanks to their efforts….”


CDJune 2002: Linda in DC writes, “All About Jazz is an on-line mag. I have noticed that they now have a separate Philadelphia version that just started. In the May-June 2002 issue (issue #2 for Philly), Eva’s Live at Blues Alley is reviewed in their cd review section!” The reviewer is Mathew Bahl, who wrote: “Live at Blues Alley is one of the three albums Ms. Cassidy recorded during her lifetime, and it remains a remarkable testament to a woman who had the talent to become the most important American interpretive singer since Frank Sinatra….”


cdScroll down a bit to read a short review of LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY: “Why did it take me a year to buy another Eva Cassidy album? Stupidity. Please, don’t be as stupid as I was! Pick this one up if you like soaring vocals, vocals that can move you to another place.” Doug in PA found this.


May 29, 2002: From John in Boston: “Today, the Boston Globe had an article about the thoughtfulness of the head of Blix Street Records who had commemorative gold record plaques made (re: ‘Songbird’) for the manager of a Boston club and Robin Young, a longtime Boston media personality, both of whom had a part in promoting Eva’s work after her death. I’m pleased that people from our city had a part in helping out.”

Another discovery from Doug in Pennsylvania: An Internet-only article entitled “Follow Your Passion.” It’s from July 13, 2001, but I don’t think I have seen it before. “Eva Cassidy had many gifts except the gift of time. That is all the more reason to celebrate that while she was alive she followed her heart and did work she believed in and about which she was passionate. We should all be so blessed.”


flag of Spain An article about Eva was in the Spanish national newspaper El Pais on April 27th, 2002. Montse in Spain found the link for us. He says, “It was published in a supplement about books and music that comes every Saturday with the newspaper. It’s an abstract of several things published here and there.” The article is by Fernando Neira and is very favorable. No new information, just a different language!


magazine cover April 2002: EVA’S A COVER GIRL! Alan in Sydney e-mailed me this morning to tell me that “There is an article on Eva in the magazine ‘The Singer’ from the UK. Published by Rhinegold Publishing, it comes with subscriptions to the magazine ‘Classical Music’. I don’t think it can be bought separately.The
cover of the magazine has the picture of Eva from ‘Eva by Heart,’ but the color is faded.The editorial comment is all on Eva, and the article is 3 pages—mostly bio stuff, but all positive and what a good example she was.”
UPDATE: Pat in the UK sent me this magazine. It’s a wonderful article, and I am asking permission to reprint it on my website. Let’s hope!


NPR Spring 2002: The National Public Radio website has a multimedia on-line magazine called “All Songs Considered” which is featuring Eva Cassidy in its current issue. The song is “Ain’t No Sunshine.” It’s a sort of slide show with musical accompaniment.

Union JackMay 2002: Matt’s sister spotted a paragraph about Eva in last week’s Sunday Express supplement. “It was a footnote to an article about that RnB entertainer Aayliah who died in the plane crash,” Matt says. The paper listed some “Posthumous Pop Sensations” such as Jimi Hendrix, Otis Redding, and Tupak Shakur. Eva is described as “little known outside her hometown of Washington DC,” etc. etc. (It would be more accurate to say “little known even in her hometown.”) They used the photo Jackie Fletcher took at the Wolf Trap Jazz Festival, of Eva in left profile singing into a microphone.


flag of US March 2002: From Jonathan in Massachusetts, who was one of the very first “regulars” at my website: “I was browsing some US music charts this morning, and Eva’s “Field’s of Gold” has just entered the Adult Contemporary Top 30 most played songs at #29 with 140 national plays during the week ending 3/22. The source is Radio and Records, which tracks all radio station airplay. This could be a very good sign! The link is http://www.rronline.com/, then click on the ‘Charts’ drop down on the bottom left, then choose ‘AC’ from the list of formats. For some reason it won’t show a direct link. She’s now on there with Bonnie Raitt, LeeAnn Rimes, Celine Dion and Cher!”


Feb. 2002: Henrik in Denmark sent me a link to a review of TIME AFTER TIME from Finn Smed Sahlholdt of the Jyllands-Posten. The reviewer gave the album five stars out of six. Henrik translated the review into English for me — here’s a quote: “One of the reviewer’s privileges is the experience of listening to records by less well-known or completely unknown artists and suddenly finding a shining star among the undistinguished mass. Such a find is Eva Cassidy and her unique voice. At home her CD never left my CD player during the entire weekend, and at work my colleagues pricked up their ears whenever her voice sounded in the room.”

12/28/2001: Derek just alerted me about the “Amazon.com Best of 2001 Top 100 Customers’ Picks.” He notes that “Eva comes in at number 2 (Songbird), number 13 (Live at Blues Alley), number 16 (Time After Time), number 51 (Eva by Heart), and number 70 (The Other Side).” I doubt any other artist is represented five times!


The Hagerstown (Maryland) Herald-Mail newspaper ran an article about songwriter Steven Digman on Sunday, January 15th. Entitled “Digman Writes the Songs,” the article can be viewed here.

The website Musicaldiscoveries.com has reprinted Steven Digman’s review of SONGBIRD. This is quite an interesting website, worth spending some time in its exploration. Digman tells me that the editor is considering expanding his section about Eva Cassidy — you might want to encourage him to do so!


Jan. 21: Today’s issue of the magazine WEEKLY STANDARD contains an article about Eva by Matt Labash. The title and subtitle are: Earth Angel — Five years after her death, the music of Eva Cassidy is spreading. Labash tells me that the article was originally planned for Reader’s Digest but was scrapped due to changes in editorship. I don’t know anything about this magazine, but I’ll be scouting for a copy of it at Borders tonight! I assume there are some photos in the print dition. **UPDATE: Nick in Virginia tells me, ” ‘The Weekly Standard’ is considered a conservative magazine published in Washington, D.C. The publisher is Australian mogul Rupert Murdoch (Fox News, Entertainment, etc.). The managing editor is William Kristol of the Sunday news talk show fame, as well as Editor Fred Barnes, whose talk show is at Fox. Mr. Barnes is conservative, a committed Christian and considered by many Washington insiders as an honest and very fair journalist, who calls it like it is.” As I have learned to expect, this article has a few errors. Artist Margaret Haven offers this correction: ‘I didn’t “help Eva eke out a living.” I hired her for her skills.’

Here’s a quote: ‘Many of her paintings, which contain an ethereal serenity, also bear a curious motif — a bubble, the size of a translucent beach ball. Her parents don’t know what it means, nor do her friends. But Grace Griffith has a theory: “Bubbles are beautiful, transient things. We come and we go, and we don’t know where we come from or where we’re going. But we have beauty with us, and it doesn’t last forever.” ‘


From Sharon Weisz, publicist for Blix Street Records: ‘Check out this week’s issue of Billboard Magazine (dated January 19) for a Valentine of a review of the “Fields of Gold” single.’ A valentine indeed — here’s a quote: Her take on the Sting composition ‘Fields of Gold’ is truly a joyful moment, a recording that will pull listeners close to the speakers, where they will accomplish the rare feat of not only hearing but also listening…. Just lovely.” The review is signed CT (meaning Chuck Taylor) and it appears in a category cryptically labelled “AC.” I gather that means “Adult Contemporary,” which I would never have guessed!


12/30: The Times of London lists Eva’s SONGBIRD as the #3 bestselling album of 2001, calling it “The word-of-mouth surprise success of the year.” The exact ranking seems to be in dispute — Tony Bramwell tells me that “According to HMV stores SONGBIRD is the 5th best selling album of the year,” and “According to the SUN newspaper SONGBIRD is the 8th best selling album of the year!!” Steve E. found an article in the Daily Mail which lists Eva fourth: “While many of next year’s heroes will be backed by huge promotional budgets, it is worth while remembering that one of 2001’s biggest selling records was a hit without any hype. Eva Cassidy’s Songbird – put together after the American singer died
tragically from skin cancer in 1996 – was released through Hot Records, a small Brighton independent, and was outsold only by Dido, Robbie Williams and David Gray.”
**UPDATE** The Independent weighs in on the “bestselling album” issue to say that SONGBIRD was #3 for the year.


Jan. 2002: Among the links recently sent me by Doug in Pennsylvania : This Stereophile review of a recent Jane Monheit album (August 2001 issue) also has some wonderfully quotable things to say about Eva’s “Over the Rainbow” : “The tune’s current renaissance began when the late Eva Cassidy cut an interpretatively wondrous guitar, vocal, and strings version in 1992. Without question, this stood alongside Garland’s apotheosis in terms of the raw emotions that pour from Cassidy’s way with the song’s inherently evocative melding of melody and words. Thanks to a belated appearance on the British pop charts and a subsequent profile of the artist on ABC’s Nightline news magazine, Cassidy’s “Rainbow” has given those who come after a new high mark to shoot for.


From Steve in Yorkshire: ‘The Songbird CD is #2 in Amazon.co.uk’s “Top 100 Bestsellers 2001.”‘ Charlie commented, “Interesting to note that Eva is the only artist in amazon.co.uk’s top 30 of the year to get 5 stars in customer ratings (other than 3 compilation
albums)!”

Our ice-skating connection, Heather, sent me an Eva link: The Philadelphia Inquirer on December 26th, 2001, published an article entitled “Enjoying a CD parade of long-forgotten talent,” written by music critic Tom Moon. Eva is the first artist mentioned in the column. (By the way, this article was evidently carried on the Knight-Ridder wire service, for it appeared in the Hagerstown Herald-Mail and possibly other papers as well.)

“You could argue that Eva Cassidy – the Washington, D.C., singer whose SONGBIRD offers hauntingly spare treatments of jazz, gospel and pop songs – became a best-selling phenom because of her much-discussed tragic story. (The singer died at age 33 in 1996 after battling cancer, and was then unknown to most outside of her hometown.) But you could also make the case that people sought out Cassidy this year because her recordings provide something unavailable elsewhere: honest, open-hearted, contrivance-free singing.

In an era when even the jazz vocalists work every imaging angle to gain attention, here was someone who refused to play that game, who crossed stylistic boundaries effortlessly and infused every line with pure conviction. She meant everything she sang, and that investment made everything she sang riveting.”


Shock Value Music Webzine has an article/review about Eva here, written by C.J. Cauley. “One thing you have to note about Eva is that when she does a cover song, she absolutely OWNS it.”

Nov. 2001 A Star Trek fan site, the USS Joshua, has a feature report about Eva.


The website for the audiophile magazine SOUNDSTAGE! lists LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY as one of the “Reference Discs” their writers use to evaluate audio systems. Roger Kanno writes, “The instrumentation is exceedingly simple, but very high-resolution systems will extract the subtle nuances of Cassidy’s soulful vocals that will allow you to connect with her and her music …. This straightforward recording will sound good on even fairly modest systems, but the vocals will truly come alive with breathtaking quality on more accomplished systems.”

Oct. 10 An audio article, not a print one — From Agent Steve in York : “I noticed last night the BBC Radio 4 ‘Womans Hour’ segment {about Eva} seemed to have been repackaged for the BBC World Service. The 10 minute audio segment is still available at the following URL : – http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/arts/highlights/010820_cassidy.shtml.


There’s a nice review of SONGBIRD here. “She slips effortlessly from one genre to another with a voice as pure and honest as a Judy Collins or a Joan Baez. On the gospel and R&B songs, she gets down with the best of ’em! Could this really be a slender, painfully shy, white girl? And then she goes on to a simple ballad and her guitar, and the sweet-voiced folkie returns. The backing instrumentation (usually bass, guitar, and drums) is simple and fully enhances the vocals.”


Sept. 23, 2001 This article by Sharon Weisz, “The Ballad of Eva Cassidy,” appears in Lip Service Magazine, “The Magazine for Music and Online Retailers.” ” It took three years for the late singer to become an overnight sensation ….” Sharon is the publicist working with Blix Street Records in the United States to promote Eva’s music.


If you read Swedish, you might be interested in this review of LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY in Hifimagisinet. Mona in Sweden reports: “Hifimagasinet is a magazine for both hardware and software in music. It presents reviews as well as tests of sound equipment.” Mona kindly translated the review for me, and some of it follows : “I have always had a special relation to Sting’s Fields of Gold and I thought of course that no one could do it better than Sting. Until now . . . This song has carried me away to the heaths in Scotland where the barley has ripened and turned yellow, waiting for becoming a good whisky, perhaps a Highland Park or a Lagavulin. But I have never cried to the song. Until now . . .”


Sept. 13

I found another Eva article from a German website here.

There’s a nice article about Eva at the German website VIVA.de, Zauberhaftes Comeback aus dem Jenseits . It’s in German.


September 6, 2001

Here’s one that came out a while ago but I just discovered it — The LEXIS legal research firm seems to have some sort of on-line magazine, and published a nice story about Eva Cassidy, Discovered Too Late / The legend of Vocalist Eva Cassidy / by Robert Wiener .

Many people in Germany have been visiting this website via a link from “Brisant. Evidently this television program recently broadcast a story about Eva. Their headline is “Tote Sängerin wird zum Megastar” which I believe means “Dead singer becomes a megastar”!

August 24th: The USA TODAY story about Eva is in today’s edition. It has been on their website for several days, oddly enough! To read it on-line, click here. Truth to tell, it’s not a very good article, it doesn’t convey any sense of what Eva was like or how her music affects her fans. But maybe it will spark curiosity in some people, who might seek out Eva’s music…. I found the use of the word “warble” in the first paragraph to be particularly annoying.

August 12: ROLLING STONE has a review of SONGBIRD in its new issue. It is on their website here. The review is favorable overall, but it is puzzling that the album only received 3 1/2 stars. As Eva’s producer/bassist Chris Biondo says, “Three and a half stars are not enough for Eva Cassidy.”

August 4 : The German radio website SWR3 has an extensive audio program about Eva, which you can listen to over the Internet. It includes lengthy passages of music, and interviews with her mother and another German relative, as well as with Paul Walters of the BBC. It’s in German, of course. From what I can tell (since I don’t speak German) it’s an excellent program. I had to search around for it a bit (handicapped again by my lack of German) but it’s definitely worth seeking out if you can understand German.

A nice Internet review of SONGBIRD here. The writer, Tim Healey, is especially interested in Eva’s use of rubato.

7/23 Here’s an interesting article about Eva’s music from the Worcester (Massachusetts) Telegram and Gazette, July 19th. Mike Schreibman alerted me about this one. The headline reads: “Songs by late singer getting raves from local fans, radio stations”

A quote: The BBC in England got the ball rolling when a copy of the Blix Street compilation ‘Songbird’ caught the attention of a producer there. BBC listeners went wild for ‘Over the Rainbow’ and that led to an hourlong special on the singer that aired in December. More than 250,000 copies of ‘Songbird’ sold in England.

Back here, National Public Radio picked up on the story and did a 9-minute piece on Cassidy that also aired in December. After that, ‘Songbird’ and the three albums Cassidy made before her death became the top-selling albums at Amazon.com.

Other national media outlets were drawn to the story and ABC’s ‘Nightline’ did a show on Cassidy that aired on May 25 and was repeated on July 4.

In between those ‘Nightline’ dates, representatives from Blix Street went to radio executives to see if they would be interested in putting ‘Over the Rainbow’ on their playlists. Steve Peck, operations manager at WSRS-FM (96.9), attended one of those meetings last month. ‘Blix Street wanted to launch a single in America after all the success they had in England. They got a bunch of us guys together for dinner and we watched the ‘Nightline’ piece and talked about it. I was convinced by the end of the night that we should play the song,’ Peck recalled..

WSRS listeners responded beyond Peck’s imagination. The station put together a 30-minute segment of its own about Cassidy that included more of her music and interviews with Bill Straw, owner of Blix Street Records. Peck said the combination of Cassidy’s utterly perfect voice and the natural air in which she wraps her technical skills proves irresistible.”

July 2001 :
From Doug in Pennsylvania: ‘There is a review of SONGBIRD in the July issue of Maryland’s “Music Monthly” magazine. If you are a long/life time resident of the metro mid Atlantic area you probably know this publication. If not, at musicmonthly.com is a list of its distribution points (it’s a free paper). It even reaches Pennsylvania.’ Doug also wrote a terrific piece about Eva which was published on the “People’s Page” in this issue, with nice mention of this website. I’m still trying to track down an actual copy; the following quote was transcribed from someone reading the article out loud over the telephone : ‘Within her Web site, Ms. Bligh notes that, although it may seem hard to believe, she witnessed Eva Cassidy and the band play at any number of sparsely-attended gigs. As such, Ms. Bligh stressed the importance of supporting live music. This point was driven home recently as I chanced upon Red Letter Day (yet another Maryland act and one-time award WAMA award nominee) at the bookstore. Music in a bookstore. Hey, I like this setting; daylight entertainment and no smoke! What the smaller venues lack in the “stadium experience,” make up for an intimacy and higher probability of interaction.’

7/16 From today’s Atlanta Journal-Constitution, there’s an article about Eva by John Blake. The headline states, ‘Eva Cassidy is the best singer I’ve ever heard in my life’ / BUT IT’S ONLY AFTER HER DEATH / THAT SHE’S HIT THE BIG TIME. A quote : ‘Though Hugh Cassidy recently gave 20 interviews in a two-week period, he and his wife, Barbara, say they don’t mind the attention directed at their late daughter. “We think that it’s wonderful,” he says.’ UPDATE: The same article has been reprinted in several other papers : It appears in the Houston Chronicle today. Error-wise, Lenny is still getting credit for that Chris Biondo quote about “pop crap,” the tribute is still reported as having been held at Blues Alley (it was at the Bayou), and only PART of the audience is said to be in tears (believe me, everybody was). Otherwise, this is a nice one, with a link to my website which has brought many visitors here today! **UPDATE** The same article is in the San Jose Mercury News — online here.

7/14/01 Mike in North Carolina just sent me a lovely article about Eva from the New Bern Sun-Journal, written by columnist Martha Reedy. He reports, “By the way, Martha Reedy (a contralto) and I sang together in a community chorus in the 80s. She is quite good and I am sure she is very sincere in her praise of and admiration for Eva.” An excerpt from the article: “Standing on stage with her guitar, she was nearly too nervous to look up at the audience. Still, she captivates the listener with her voice. It’s not just her technical skill that grabs you. It’s the feeling that she was reaching out with her heart. It captures you and won’t let go.”

6/29/2001
From Blix Street Records today: “For the third time in as many years, [Los Angeles Times] jazz columnist Don Heckman has devoted much of his column to Eva Cassidy. It’s on Page 20 of today’s Calendar section.” The article is called “Three Singers Who Defy Easy Labels / Eva Cassidy, Laurel Masse and Lorraine Feather stretch the vocal genre in interesting ways.”

AMAZON.COM included this in their recent e-mail newsletter: “Record Breaker: At one point recently, Eva Cassidy’s albums held five spots (including the top 4) on our charts, and her albums continue to dominate our top 20. Never before in Amazon.com’s three-year history has an artist captured so many top spots at once; she is truly a phenomenon. Cassidy’s posthumous fame continues to be fueled by the media, introducing her soulful, eclectic music to legions of new fans.”

6/28 The Washington Post has an article about Chuck Brown today which mentions his connection with Eva:

CHUCK BROWN’S in the house . . . the White House, that is. Friday, along with stars such as Queen Latifah, Boyz to Men and Lionel Hampton, the Godfather of Go-Go will meet the president of the United States as George W. Bush signs a proclamation honoring Black Music Month. Maybe the president should start thinking about proclaiming this the Year of Chuck Brown, because that’s what it’s shaping up to be….

“One of the greatest moments in my life was when I met Eva Cassidy and had a chance to do some stuff that I always wanted to try, a little jazz and blues,” Brown says. “I might have gone out there and sang a few jazz tunes by myself, but I always dreamed of singing in a duet like Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, Ray Charles and Betty Carter. They inspired me when I was young” — here Brown breaks into a sweet, then gruff musical conversation — “and I wanted to do that so bad. Someday I’m going to sing me some jazz with a woman.”

He recalls the shock at hearing Cassidy’s voice on tape during a recording session. “I drove home and that voice followed me all the way down the highway. I called [producer Chris Biondo] and said I wanted to do a record with her.” And when Brown finally met Cassidy, “I couldn’t believe she was such a nice, innocent, sweet lady. She looked like the sunshine.”

Cassidy’s life was cut short by cancer in 1996; she was only 33. Unknown outside Washington in her lifetime, and little known even here, Cassidy has in the last year sold millions of albums as a result of extended support from English and American media caught up in her tragic tale. “She’s done so much for me, opened so many doors, just by me being on her album,” says Brown, whose gentlemanliness obscures the fact that “The Other Side” was actually his album. Brown, after all, was the Washington music icon, Cassidy the unknown singer who inspired him and gave him the courage to do something different.

“I couldn’t have done it without her,” says Brown, with enduring affection.’

6/24

Julia Keller, a “cultural critic” for the Chicago Tribune, wrote an eloquent article about Eva Cassidy and “how we see, hear, read and think differently once we become aware of an artist’s death….” Go read the whole article, but here’s the opening:
“Certain voices get under your skin like a letter opener does the flap of an envelope. Your soul is exposed. All of your secrets tumble out. Eva Cassidy had that kind of voice. It was lilting and husky, a thing of steel and a thing of smoke, both gritty and gossamer. Hearing her sing, you want to change the locks on your doors; that’s how vulnerable she makes you feel. Yet halfway through listening to her ‘Songbird’ CD (1998) for the first time a few weeks ago, I looked at the liner notes and
discovered she was dead. She had died of cancer in 1996 at 33. I was intensely aware of listening to the second half of the CD
differently than I had the first. Knowing that she was dead, knowing that she had died young, changed the experience — but how?”

June 13, 2001
From Jefferson Morley in the Washington Post Magazine, a brief story about this website. Are you an Evangelist? By the way, the article mentions a tape of Eva singing in a bar. To save me a lot of e-mail, I must regretfully tell you that No, the tape is not available. Will some of that material be used on an album someday? Who knows, but please don’t bombard the record company with requests about it. They are very busy promoting Eva’s five other albums.

In the newest edition of Music Connection Magazine is this profile of Bill Straw at Blix Street Records. “Bill Straw had met Martin Jennings, who was deputy manager for Warners U.K., in 1975. Through Jennings, Straw met Tony Bramwell, whose place in rock history was assured when he turned his boss at a record store — Brian Epstein — on to a band called the Beatles. Thirty-odd years later, when Bramwell heard Cassidy, he walked her music directly into British Public Radio, the powerhouse network that blankets the entire country. When the British public heard Cassidy the reaction was overwhelming. ‘Then by December it was a gold album,’ informs Straw, ‘selling over 100,000 units on Songbird….'”

6/12
From Andrew at Hot Records in the UK: “There is a really nice piece on Eva in the current edition of Record Buyer Magazine, UK only. They do have a web site but it has not been up-dated to include the Eva piece as yet. The web address is www.recordbuyer.co.uk.” Has anyone seen this? Paul in the UK reports, “The piece is called ‘Eva For Ever’ by Mick St Michael… It’s nice to see Eva on the front cover of a UK monthly. What did make me smile was that Eva shares the front cover with…..Ozzy Osbourne! Is there something we should know?”

From the June 1 issue of Radio & Records, a radio industry
paper, in Carol Archer’s “Smooth Jazz Notes” column :

Music intoxicates me. I love the rush, the unabashed joy it unleashes in me like a drug. It’s an addiction shared by many in radio and records. Every now and then – not nearly often enough – I hear something so amazing that it changes me in ways difficult to describe, but I always listen with the hope that I’ll find the amazement I crave and be overcome by a piece of music and completely swept away in it. I had one of those revelations recently when I listened to Eva Cassidy’s ‘Songbird’ (Blix Street), which closes with an extraordinary interpretation of ‘Over the Rainbow,’ also the first single. Until now I considered Judy Garland’s version and, later, the version by Israel “Bruddah Iz” Kamakawiwo’ole the ultimate readings of that tune. But Cassidy’s version, pitch-perfect, artful and devoid of any pretense, brought me to my knees. With each subsequent listen I’m more riveted by the beauty of her performance and the song’s subtle, delicate arrangement. I asked Smooth ! Jazz Assistant Editor Pete Petro’s opinion, but he hadn’t gotten to it yet. He later reappeared wide-eyed, misty, verklemmt, and whispered, “That’s not a cover.” Then he put his hand to his heart with a word or two about his composure. In a dumbed-down world – one saturated with banal images, pointless messages and commercial junk – I would add Eva Cassidy’s ‘Over the Rainbow’ in a heartbeat as a gift to my listeners. In a heartbeat!

May 24
This feature story about Eva, by Mick Fitzsimmons, is part of the BBC Radio 2’s excellent new folk/acoustic website. ‘For a singer who had little interest in fame and who had been virtually ignored by the major record labels, it’s an astonishing story. For any acoustic-based performer to sell so many records in this era of dance music, nu-metal bluster and hip hop bravado is remarkable in itself. The fact that Eva Cassidy died in 1996 from cancer at the age of 33 makes it even more so….’

A lot of people are linking here from an Eva feature story on a radio webpage in Germany. The article is “Wie eine tote Sängerin zum Megastar wird / Die Eva Cassidy-Story.” Eva’s mom, Barbara Kratzer Cassidy, is a native of Germany; she will be glad that Eva is receiving some notice there now.

May 21: From FACTS in Switzerland, “Die Tote in den Charts / Bitteres Märchen — zu Lebzeiten kannte keiner Eva Cassidy, nach ihrem Tod verkauft sie Hunderttausende CDs. / Von Bänz Friedli”

May 16, 2001
In case you missed the ABC “World News Tonight” story about Eva from April 9th, you can still see it on the ABC website.

5/14/2001
– From Paul in the UK: ‘This month’s copy of Total Guitar (“Europe’s bestselling guitar magazine”) includes four pages of Eva’s arrangement of OTR, with tab, chords and lyrics. There is also a free tutorial CD with it, with an instrumental version of it (played by Kit Morgan, not Eva). By coincidence, we have the Ozzy Osbourne connection again, as Black Sabbath’s “Paranoid” is also on the CD! The CD is billed as “8 crowd pleasing songs for the summer!” It’s all in the June 2001 issue.’

5/11/2001
Reuters News Service had an extensive story about Eva on its news wires yesterday. Nothing really new but a nice article. “Cassidy’s story — the tale of a shy but talented singer who died before the world discovered her — flies in the face of a music industry often fuelled by hype and manufactured artists.” The story has been showing up in newspapers internationally, including Bankok!

5/8
Here is an excellent review of TIME AFTER TIME from the audiophile journal The Absolute Sound. ‘Her longtime producer Chris Biondo said of her that “she never really thought much about what she did.” Maybe that’s why she sang so true — she could only sing from one place in her soul. Maybe that was her greatest gift. If you treasure great singers — especially those whose talents have been largely ignored — this disc will become a treasure.’ **NOTE — they are reorganizing their site and this article is temporarily unavailable.

5/3
From HW in the UK, “Try on Father Monty’s wonderful piece on Eva!” English or Spanish.

5/2

From Tom in the Netherlands: “Here’s another URL with a short article on Eva in the Philippine Star.

4/29
From the “valley edition” of the Los Angeles Times on 4/28/2001, this is, like, an article about Blix Street Records and “the Cassidy craze,” by Kristina Sauerwein. ‘”Getting her music out has become my mission,” Straw said.’

4/27
You can read a transcript of CNN’s recent story about Eva
here.

4/22
In today’s Sunday Times of London, Dan Cairns discusses “How come Eva Cassidy is at the top of the charts?”

4/20

From Italy, a newspaper called (I believe) Repubblica printed this article about Eva. Here are couple of quotes, courtesy of Gary and Gwynne The headline reads:“Her album has been at the top of the English charts for two weeks, but she died five years ago. Everyone’s mad for Eva Cassidy / The voice that is no more / The story of an undiscovered American singer.” And in the body of the story, “A phenomenon…everyone is asking how an artist can reach such success five years after dying….” (It also stated that Eva never left the state of Washington, but I can’t get too upset about that, my knowledge of Italian geography isn’t any better.)

Check this out — “An audio appreciation of the unmatchable folk, jazz and blues songbird Eva Cassidy. For five years after her untimely death, some of us loved her. Now everyone does as she gets a number one album in the UK. Find out why…. by Stuart Astill”

In the April 20th issue of ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, there’s a two-page article about Eva. Part of the Eva article, “Happily Eva After,” is now on their website, with a discography and mini-album-reviews here. The article looks great at first glance, with a terrific photo, but the writing strikes me as rather snide. What do other people think? Add your thoughts to the guestbook. (Note: If the first link doesn’t work, try this one which is to their archives.)

4/14 From the April 2001 US Airways in-flight magazine, an article by Susan Gladin entitled ALL ABOUT EVA. “Although I never knew her in the flesh, through her voice I feel as if I do know her – by heart.”

From Tony B. of Hot Records: “EVA is in the Top 25 Voices of the Century which will be announced in The DAILY EXPRESS on Good Friday and broadcast over the weekend on BBC Radio 2.” I know many of you proposed Eva’s name for this! Gill says “You can see the full listing on the www.bbc.co.uk/radio2 page Voices of the Century link.”

4/11 From the Baltimore Sun on April 9, a brief article by Dan Rodricks. ‘I don’t think sympathy, guilt or fascination with tragedy is what made “Songbird” a No. 1 selling album in the United Kingdom and put her other albums at the top of Amazon.com’s charts. It’s the talent, the sound of hope and love in that voice.’ UPDATE: I’m told this link is outdated. I’ll try to find another link to this excellent article/column. Meanwhile, you can read it on Niki Lee’s website.

4/10/2001 Time Magazine European Edition published a story about Eva in the April 16 2001 edition, written by Jeff Chu. You can read the text here. “This is American singer Eva Cassidy’s moment.” Chu did a lot with a short piece.

The Australian Daily Telegraph printed a story about Eva on March 31. The writer is Peter Lalor. This is a good one.

Today’s Arkansas Democrat Gazette features an article by Ellis Widner. “Death has no power over Eva Cassidy’s SONGBIRD.” ‘Straw believes an artist’s best work is often accomplished before they are affected and influenced by the business of making music. Cassidy, he says, recorded all of her songs in relative obscurity, untainted by commercial concerns. “Eva’s legacy is pretty much pure.” ‘ OUTDATED LINK; sorry!

4/6 The PEOPLE MAGAZINE article is out! It’s the issue with Nicole Kidman on the cover. You can read the article about Eva here.

Here is a review of TIME AFTER TIME from the current issue of Total Guitar Magazine. “Any good? Oh yes. Stunning in fact.” Eva always said she wasn’t much of a guitar player, she would have been astonished at praise from such a source!

4/7
‘How often have you, as A & R manager, slapped yourself in the face for missing the opportunity of scoring a world hit record? This must have been the case when the American singer Eva Cassidy, out of the blue, appeared on the independent British hitlists, and a video clip of her was televised in Top of the Pops. What had happened? Eva Cassidy, who died of cancer in 1996, was totally ignored by the record companies when she was still alive. No market for her, was their conclusion. How wrong can one be?’ You can read the Dutch version here.

“Eva’s back catalogue boosted” from the Daily Mail on April 6th.

In the Los Angeles Daily News, an article about Blix Street Records. “During her short life, Cassidy flew well below the music industry’s radar….”

March 31, 2001
An article appeared in the Irish Times Weekend Review section, entitled
‘Who is Eva Cassidy?’
‘Posthumous success in the pop and rock worlds often happens – you only have to look at the industry behind Presley, Hendrix, (Jim) Morrison, Lennon, Cobain et al, to understand that, in pop terms, death sells in perpetuity. Occasionally, it extends a career beyond its mortal shelf life, but for most of the time it keeps, at very least, the concept of the iconic rock star well and truly alive. So who, then, you might justifiably ask, is Eva Cassidy? And why has her album, Songbird, been at the top of the charts for several weeks – almost five years after her death from cancer at the age of 33? ‘ One remark in the article prompted a discussion in the guestbook: ‘She was a singer who liked singing a wide range of songs yet who was markedly unequipped with any true personal artistic vision. A good singer with no voice of her own.’

March 30, 2001
Here’s a lovely article about Eva in The Capital newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland. The headline reads “BBC show revives interest in local singer Eva Cassidy.” It’s worth reading but makes some funny mistakes.

March 26 : Robin Young of “Here and Now” at WBUR-Boston devoted part of her show to Eva today. You can listen to it via Realaudio here . You’ll need to go to the archives to listen to the show — it’s the last ten minutes of the March 26th program. Robin has long been one of the most devoted “EVA-angelists” and has spread the word most successfully throughout the Boston area.

March 23 There is an article about Eva in the Washington Post Style Section today (Friday), written by Richard Harrington. The article was also reprinted in the Los Angeles Times the same week. “A remarkable posthumous career trajectory began barely a month after Cassidy’s death: She won 10 Washington Area Music Awards, including artist of the year and album of the year. That Wammie was for “Live at Blues Alley,” the only solo album released while Cassidy was alive.” Harrington told me that in his 30 years as a music critic, he has never seen anything like this.

March 30, 2001

Eva is becoming better-known in Germany, as evidenced by this article in the RP-ONLINE – JOURNAL. A good thing, too — Eva’s mother is from Bad Kreutznach, Germany, so Eva is half German! (The rest is Scots/Irish.) Here’s an excerpt: ‘A dead singer is topping the British charts this week. Five years after her death, the till then mostly unknown Eva Cassidy, has a hit in the UK with her album “Songbird”, which was released in 1998. Her Dad Hugh told BBC, he always knew that his daughter had a special voice.’

March 23, 2001 The Times of London has an excellent article about Eva today. It’s called “Eva’s bittersweet success” and was written by Paul Sexton. ‘Last week, the smart money was on Daft Punk’s Discovery to debut at the top of the album chart, and it was ahead on sales all the way through until Saturday. But then Songbird, buoyed by exposure on Comic Relief the night before and a Thursday night feature on Tonight with Trevor McDonald, raced ahead to take the prize by a margin of 27,000 copies.’

March, 2001 – This is a review of SONGBIRD from The Picket News of Hagerstown, Maryland, written by Steven Digman (the songwriter of “Say Goodbye,” “Easy Street Dream,” and “Anniversary Song.”) “It is personal passion personified. It is your song that she sings.”

March 19, 2001 From the New York Times website today. This story was issues through the Associated Press. ‘`”It’s a nice little vindication that cream rises to the top,” her father, Hugh, said from the family home in Bowie, Md. “I think she had a way with lyrics, and a way with getting a song across that touched people and gave a lot of hope.”‘ This was only on the website, not in the print edition.

From ABCnews.com via Reuters,
“Eva Cassidy Tops Charts Five Years After Her Death.”

March 7, 2001 From Tom in the Netherlands: “Yesterday was Eva Cassidy day in The Netherlands (again). On the very same day two articles were published in various Dutch newspapers. One in Algemeen Dagblad. The other one in the Haagsche Courant, simply to report that ‘Songbird’ reached platinum in the UK. A record breaking
event, I thought the record buying public in The Netherlands would be interested in. I know that most visitors of your wonderful site aren’t fluent with Dutch 🙂 but I wanted you to know that the people in Holland have a warm heart for Eva’s music.”

More from the Netherlands in the Haagsche Courant. “Her Number One tops a new record. Artists whose lives ended dramatically like Jim Croce’s and Otis Redding’s, after their deaths only had Number One hit singles, and it has never happened before that a singer who died young set a record with an album. The Netherlands follow Britain’s example, as for the first time this week ‘Songbird’ ranks 82 on the Dutch charts. Like in the United Kingdom, Eva Cassidy could finally get (late) recognition in the Netherlands as well, if only Dutch radio and tv would cooperate.”

3/10/01 Another article about Eva in Billboard Magazine! The article is about Eva’s sales and distribution. ‘Jennings adds that the spontaneous, unforced nature of Cassidy’s success has generated widespread good will toward Hot, even if fulfilling the demand for the album is a challenge for an operation that employs just 15-20 people between its two bases in England and Australia. “Everything’s a challenge, but everyone’s really into it, and we can do it,” Jennings says. “We’ve got great relationships with shops. “Distribution’ is the magic word, and I like to think we’ve nurtured every little friendly face [toward Cassidy]. Every piece of feedback and nuance is processed and absorbed.”‘

March 6, 2001 HMV Choice Award for Best Album of 2000, chosen by readers, goes to TIME AFTER TIME.

March 3, 2001 Today’s Mirror, a national tabloid with a large circulation in the UK, has a story about Eva Cassidy, per Gary: “It’s at the bottom of the news page though I haven’t been able to access the photos….a couple of pictures of Eva with one of her as a young girl in pigtails, one of Barbara and Hugh, etc.” The article includes an interview with Eva’s parents, Hugh and Barbara Cassidy. A few errors, of course….

March 3, 2001
The BBC website
has an article by Chris Jones about “the posthumous success of a singer whose talent triumphed over the odds. The discovery of Eva Cassidy’s voice is one that everyone wants to share, so that others, too, can become willing captives of her spell. Now an international audience of millions has become aware of her magic.” Another article from the BBC website is here. Derek says “It’s a report on your Uncle Hugh’s comments on the UK TV show, This Morning.” And here’s yet another story from the BBC website.

Feb. 28 The US tabloids picked up the torch! The New York Daily News ran this story about Eva on 2/27/01. Good job, but it was melanoma, not ovarian cancer. ‘Straw has no doubt that the tragedy of Cassidy’s story has drawn people. “But people die every day,” he says. “This wouldn’t mean so much if the music weren’t so strong.”‘

Feb. 28 Don’t miss this one : My brilliant (posthumous) career by Julia Stuart, from the Feb. 26 Independent.

From John S. in Australia: “The Australian newspaper, Wednesday 28 Feb, carried an article/photo on page 3.” The article focuses on Sydney-based Didgeridoo Records, known as Hot Records in Britain and Europe. Chart action has been rare for Didgeridoo Records. Signing artists who are dead would seem an unlikely marketing strategy to rectify the situation. This week, however, the Sydney-based indie label is enjoying the biggest success of its 17 years in the music industry with a top-three album in Britain’s mainstream charts…. Such has been the demand for SONGBIRD in Britain that the company’s tiny office there, in the small village of Angmering, near Brighton, was besieged. It had to rent a nearby farmer’s shed and recruit some of the locals to put CDs in boxes.”

Feb. 27 Today’s Daily Telegraph has another article about Eva, the second in four days. This one is an interview with Eva’s parents, Hugh and Barbara Cassidy. ***** JOURNALISTS, PLEASE TAKE NOTE : **** Again I feel compelled to go on the record to make a few corrections, because an error sometimes takes on a life of its own. Some of these have appeared in several places. First, Eva had two sisters, Anette and Margret, as well as her violinist brother Dan. Second, when Eva came to the tribute concert at the Bayou nightclub in Washington, DC (not at Blues Alley), she used a walker. Weak as Eva was, she did not have to be carried. And she wore a rather elegant cap on her head, not a bandana. Finally, for the record, Chris Biondo’s father was a civil servant (now retired), not a lawyer. (See also the yellow box below with other corrections about medical insurance, etc.) One more, at the behest of Eva’s father: The face of the angel sculpture is not clay, it is aluminum that was recycled from soda cans. He says he sculpted it in clay and made a cast in aluminum.

February 24, 2001 In the Daily Telegraph,
another story about Eva’s growing popularity. ” ‘Radio stations have had repeated requests from listeners to play her music, according to Rebecca Delve, spokesman for Hot Records, her record label. She added: “Whenever people hear it on the radio they phone up as the music makes them feel so emotional.”‘

In The Scotsman on February 23rd was a particularly nice article about Eva. Go read it for yourself. “Songbird has sold 230,000 copies in total. More than 130,000 of them have been since the beginning of the year. That any artist should experience a boom in popularity after their death is not uncommon. The Diana effect has seen many a performer’s career receive a posthumous and beneficial reassessment. What is remarkable about Cassidy is that at the time of her death she was unknown outside her home town, Washington DC. For an established artist to become more famous when they are dead than when they were alive is accepted. For an amateur singer to hit the top from beyond the grave is unheard of.” The Scotsman writer, Jonathan Trew, drew heavily upon Jefferson Morley’s excellent article “When Chuck Met Eva” and generally produced a more thoughtful and well-rounded piece than others I have seen lately.

February 21, 2001 The UK paper the Sun ran a story about Eva today. I am told that the Sun has the widest circulation in the United Kingdom. A quote or two: “She’s no.11 in the album charts – a waiflike blonde with an angelic voice. But tragically, Eva Cassidy died five years before she became a star…. She would have been amazed to know that Tower Records last week devoted the main display window in their flagship store in London’s Piccadilly Circus to promoting the five albums released after her death….” The whole text is available at the “Voice of an Angel” website.

Feb. 19, 2001 The British newspaper the Daily Express had a two-page story about Eva in yesterday’s paper (Sunday, February 18th, 2001). They don’t appear to have an active website. “A little-known singer has stormed into the music charts — five years after her death.” To view a JPG scan of the article click first here then click here. I’ll only leave these up for a few days since the files are rather large.

February 13, 2001 Thanks to an anonymous tip, I can offer a link to a review of SONGBIRD from the
Toronto Globe and Mail.
“Consciously or not, Blix Records has packed this album with tunes whose lyrics seem to presage both the singer’s untimely death and her surprising resurrection.”

February 11, 2001 A wonderful article from the Netherlands in the Haagsche Courant newspaper here. Loe has very kindly translated it into English so you can read it here. “England is totally in the grip of the American Eva Cassidy. It only seems a matter of time, and the Netherlands will follow. Who is this ‘unknown’ singer who died five years ago at the age of 33 from cancer?” “….Anyone who only purchases one CD a year can, despite any specific musical taste, not go wrong by buying ‘Songbird’. It is a CD for life.”

February 10, 2001 The London Times reviewed TIME AFTER TIME today in the “Play” entertainment supplement and gave the album four stars. “Listening to Time After Time it is really quite difficult to establish just why, during her life, she found commercial success hard to come by. She had a truly great voice and, even if Time After Time features only cover versions, they are still extraordinary interpretations. The title track written by Cyndi Lauper, is transformed in Cassidy’s hands into an intensely moving study of love. On Easy Street Dream she most readily recalls Aretha Franklin — Cassidy was white — while her take on Joni Mitchell’s Woodstock is breathtaking. Time to discover Eva Cassidy for
yourself. You won’t be disappointed.”

February 1, 2001 The conservative news magazine U.S. News and World Report has an article about Eva in their Feb. 5 issue. You can read the article here. It’s entitled Ella + Aretha + Odetta = Eva.

January 20, 2001 Billboard Magazine featured Eva Cassidy on the front page, with a photo. For those of you unfamiliar with the magazine, Billboard is the most widely-read publication of the music industry — similar to the Wall Street Journal for finance. The article, written by the magazine’s Washington bureau chief Bill Holland, is lengthy and thorough. A quote or two :

‘Incredibly, her albums commanded four of the five top positions on Amazon.com’s Dec. 20, 2000, Top Sellers chart. “Songbird” captured the No. 1 spot, beating out the Beatles’ “1,” which was No. 3. Her “Live At Blues Alley (Live)” album took No. 2, and “Time After Time” grabbed the No. 4 slot. “The Other Side,” a jazz-inflected live duet album on Liaison Records with go-go godfather (and excellent balladeer) Chuck Brown, hit No. 5. Her only full studio album, “Eva By Heart,” also on Blix Street, ranked No. 7.

A 10-minute NPR “Morning Edition” feature on Cassidy precipitated the December sales spike. But Amazon.com spokeswoman Emily Glassman says that even the broadcast doesn’t explain the huge reaction.

“It’s amazing,” she says. “Sometimes, following an NPR show on an artist, there might be an album that hits somewhere in the top 100 chart. But to have [that many] albums in the top 10-well, that’s unprecedented.” Glassman says the company cannot reveal its sales figures.’

UNION JACK IMAGEOctober 18-19, 2000 In the November 2000 issue of “MOJO” there is a marvelous interview with Mick Fleetwood entitled “ONE FROM THE HEART. Mick Fleetwood thought he’d heard it all, but the voice of Eva Cassidy touched his soul.” You can read the article from a rather large JPG file here.

Two quotes from the article: “I am always on the lookout for new talent — if only because that’s how I’ve kept Fleetwood Mac going for 35 years. She immediately captivated me. She did a lot of covers, yet it was like hearing a song for the first time….” “I also love her version of ‘Over the Rainbow.’ The sweetest thing you ever heard. I often listen to her music, me and my wife. It brings back a lot of memories. She moved people and just had this PRESENCE. She was very shy but, on-stage, as strong as an ox. There’s a lot of jazz in her, in the most accessible sense — people have compared her to Ella Fitzgerald. She was a great interpreter of songs. She wrote, but she liked grabbing other people’s songs. She was an interpreter of the highest caliber, a brave place to go.”

Here’s an article about Eva and her UK/Australia distributor, Hot Records, from
Billboard Magazine.

UNION JACK IMAGEFrom the August 2000 issue of MOJO magazine, a review of TIME AFTER TIME by Johnny Black. (Mojo is reportedly the best music magazine in the United Kingdom.)


This is a review of TIME AFTER TIME from the June 18th edition of the Melbourne Sun Herald.
CLICK HERE
to read it!

Another review from Down Under. This is from the Melbourne AGE “Greenpages” on June 7, 2000.
Click here
to read it.

From the Sunday Washington Post Arts Section on October 1, “The Late Eva Cassidy’s ‘Time’: Just Heavenly,” a review by Buzz McClain. “Eva Cassidy had the kind of voice you fall in love to, and with….

UNION JACK IMAGEAnother new review of TIME AFTER TIME from Darren Lee on BIRDpages here. “Blix Street once again unearths another treasure trove. Assembled from studio recordings and some live ones from The Maryland Inn and the classic Blues Alley concerts, ‘Time After Time’ brings forth more goodies from the Cassidy archives, once again confirming my belief that she remains one of the greatest singers of all time. What looks on the surface (certainly to those unfamiliar with her work) to be a patchwork quilt of covers, this, like her previous albums, is a magical journey of discovery and rediscovery, contrasting the explosive power of her voice with magical understatement as she leaps through a gamut of musical styles.”

Here’s an article from the July 2000
HiFi News : “The woman was a jukebox from heaven.”

August 21, 2000 A review from the Hartford Courant (in Connecticut, USA) says of TIME AFTER TIME: “This album is a triumph. Eva Cassidy’s clear, heartfelt vocals, crisp acoustic guitar, and rocking backup band make for a CD you want to pop in the car and listen to all summer….”

And this from the St. Paul Pioneer Press, from their pop music critic Jim Walsh, published on August 14th.

UNION JACK IMAGEAugust 20, 2000 One of the most important newspapers in the United Kingdom, the Daily Telegraph, said this about Eva and TIME AFTER TIME on August 19th.

More Reviews for TIME AFTER TIME: I just encountered the following via
a web search (in some cases you may need to scroll down to find the right review):
A review from the Wiseacre website;
A review from the Sonicnet website;
–and a review from Barfly Magazine in Australia.

November 10, 2000 Thank you to John van Tiel for this translation of the 4 1/2 star review of TIME AFTER TIME from the Netherlands: “Eva Cassidy was an American singer who died in 1996 at the age of 33. At the time, she was not particularly well-known outside the Washington area, which changed when the compilation album, Songbird, appeared 2 years later. It sold tremendously without any promotion whatsoever. By now, the singer with the golden voice who seems to be able to make any song her own without any effort has fans all over the world. This album contains songs that have not been released on cd before. Many new fans will be touched, too, by the wonderful voice of a singer who had the power to make you feel a song.” If you read Dutch, you’ll find the review here.
(Scroll down to find it.)

Thank you to Anders Ahlerup from Sweden for this translation of another review of TIME AFTER TIME. ‘Review published in Westmanlands Läns Tidning (The Westmanland County Newspaper) 00-07-27 The American singer Eva Cassidy died of cancer in 1996, only 33 years old. As it should, her records have now started to increase in sales, and the seed to a legend has been born…. It is no doubt that Eva Cassidy sings very beautifully, but still it feels a little uninspired to do songs like Paul Simon´s “Kathy´s Song”, Jodi Mitchells “Woodstock” and Cyndi Laupers “Time after Time”. As background music for a nice evening in front of the open fire it works ok, but it´s better to listen to the splendid “Eva by Heart”, where Eva Cassidy´s singing voice comes more to its right.’ If you read Swedish, you’ll find the review here.

December 3, 2000 There was an article about Eva Cassidy in the Montreal Gazette on Thursday that you can access here. The writer is Mary Lamey. Thanks to folk DJ Mike Regenstreif of CKUT for this link. Eva’s father, Hugh Cassidy, told me at Thanksgiving that Eva was becoming better-known in Canada, and this article confirms it. “It took about 30 seconds for Cassidy to work her magic…. Eva Cassidy is the greatest singer you have never heard of. A cult figure in her home town of Washington, D.C., she has admirers as diverse as Sting, Mick Fleetwood, Roberta Flack and jazz great Shirley Horn. She has been lionized in the pages of MOJO, England’s hippest music mag, Playboy and the Wall Street Journal….”

UNION JACK IMAGEThe Other SideThe venerable Times of London must really love Chuck and Eva, because they reviewed the album THE OTHER SIDE twice. From the daily edition of the Times of London, a review of THE OTHER SIDE, which had just been released in the United Kingdom by HOT Records. “A singer of unusual grace and astounding versatility…the power and commanding character of Cassidy’s voice leaps from the speakers.” This review is from the Sunday Times. Most quotable quote: “If you are all too weary of Celine Dion-style overkill, Cassidy shows what a genuine soul voice can do as she drifts, alone and wistful, through Over the Rainbow.”

Blues Access Magazine‘s editor, Cary Wolfson, discusses how Eva’s voice haunted him on a trip to Indonesia. From the Winter 1999 issue.

UNION JACK IMAGEThe “Rhythm and Blues Music Primer” in the U.K. has an excellent biography of Eva. It looks like an interesting web site to explore.

UNION JACK IMAGE“I became interested in her story and why she never became really famous, I had to know more, there was a certain mystique about it all, and my quest for the truth began. This article reveals my findings….” Darren Lee wrote this article about Eva for BIRDpages, the online directory of British Independent Record Dealers.

UNION JACK IMAGEMay 13, 2000 A major UK newspaper, the DAILY EXPRESS, printed an article about Eva on May 13th here!

UNION JACK IMAGEThe BBC Radio 2 listeners love Eva Cassidy! Thank you to Bob Harris, Terry Wogan, Paul Walters, Mike Harding, and Michael Parkinson for helping to
make Eva so popular in England.

CD IMAGEHiFi + Magazine has this review of EVA BY HEART in their on-line review archives.

Review from PLAYBOY: This paragraph was in the October 1998 issue (the one with Cindy Crawford). If you knew Eva personally, you’d wonder how she’d react to having her singing reviewed in PLAYBOY. Even Eva would have to have been pleased at this accolade: “SONGBIRD has every right to be compared to the best work of important singers.”

PLAYBOY

October, 1998

Eva Cassidy’s SONGBIRD (Blix Street) is a collection of
pop, rock, jazz, gospel and blues standards. Her voice is sweet,
swinging, bluesy and tender; above all, it radiates musical
assurance. The concluding track is an over-the-top OVER THE
RAINBOW that Cassidy made with Washington, D.C. go-go king Chuck
Brown. Although the album was released after Cassidy’s death from
cancer at 33, SONGBIRD has every right to be compared to the best
work of important singers.

–DAVE MARSH

People Magazine ran this review of SONGBIRD in its July 20, 1998, issue. (Editorial comment: I was so excited that such a widely-read magazine as People was going to review the album, but despite a quotable quote or two, I was disappointed in what was written.
Lugubrious
! Humph!)

Richard Harrington of The Washington Post
reviews both SONGBIRD and Chuck Brown’s solo jazz album TIMELESS, dedicated to Eva Cassidy.

Tower Records’ e-zine “epulse” reviewed SONGBIRD in May of 1998. This is one of the nicest, most spontaneously sincere reviews I found on the Internet : “…a record so hauntingly beautiful that it immediately drew a steady stream of editors, artists, and even ad people into my office, asking ‘Who _is_ this?'” Senior epulse editor Bill Forman also chose SONGBIRD as one of the best albums of 1998. (Comment in 2015: This is still one of my favorite quotes about Eva.)

Australian FlagFrom Australia comes this review of SONGBIRD by Bernie Howitt, first published in a free music paper called DRUM MEDIA. “Have you ever wondered what an angel sounds like?…”

CD IMAGE

The Internet-only review site POWERSOUND reviews SONGBIRD (scroll down past the Lani Hall
review).

CD IMAGE

Another review available only on the Internet is on Kevin’s Celtic and
Folk CD Reviews
.

The Boston Globe’s Steve Morse reviewed SONGBIRD on October 22, 1998.

SWISS FLAG IMAGEIf you speak German, try reading these Swiss reviews of SONGBIRD and of EVA BY HEART and LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY.