Alicia Keys

Alicia Keys: No Sophomore Jinx    ·    November 14th, 2003

Clive Davis told us last night that Alicia Keys was not going to suffer from a sophomore jinx.

By “us,” I mean about 300 people who were stuffed into a renovated warehouse called Industria Superstudio in the West Village. We were there to hear Keys debut songs from her second album, “The Diary of Alicia Keys,” which will hit stores on December 2.

By “us,” I also mean the singer Pink, who came with not only her very nice mother but also her new boyfriend, Tommy Lee, the sometime husband of Pamela Anderson.

Apparently the two, uh, musicians had met the night before last at another party and then, according to today’s Page Six, played tonsil hockey immediately thereafter.

Lee, up close, is full of tattoos and kind of menacing in a passive way. He, more than most, certainly knows what Pink’s hit “Get the Party Started” is all about.

By “us,” I should further include the well-spoken, polite and friendly Grandmaster Flash, whose highly influential “The Message” was one of the first successful rap records. The very blond district attorney from “Law & Order,” Elisabeth Röhm, was there too, as were a lot of radio and print press people who wanted to see if Keys had the sophomore jinx.

Boy, it would have been great if it turned out she was a mess, wouldn’t it? Can you imagine those headlines?

But here’s the story: “Diary” will be a smash hit. Beautiful, charming, smart and talented, Keys performed several songs from it, including the title track — which she said she doesn’t like to call a “title” track.

She also showed off her current single “You Don’t Know My Name,” featuring a delicious live performance by famed soul group Moments (aka Roy, Goodman and Brown), “Streets of New York,” which has a sample from Stevie Wonder’s “Living for the City,” and a gorgeous Burt Bacharach-like song, the title of which wasn’t completely clear, but may be called “Someone” and could turn out to be her biggest hit so far.

This was after she teased the audience with a medley from her first album of “How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore?”, “A Woman’s Worth” and “Falling.”

“I love this intimacy,” Keys told the small crowd. “I’m really happy right now.”

That much was obvious. Sitting at her keyboards, with talented sidemen backing her up, Keys is in her element.

She’s obviously trying new things on “Diary.” The songs seem to have a bluesy, loose feel, with jazz tinges. Someone at the show last night said the album sounded “very ’70s. And that’s a good thing.”

What’s obvious is that Alicia Keys has just an enormous talent the depths of which have yet to be explored. It’s very exciting to think she’ll be making music for the next 20 years or more. The future is hers.

Source: FoxHome | News



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