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Album Review, Interview and Profile: A Look at British Superstar Cliff Richard and His New Album ‘Rise Up’ with an Interview with Two of the Album’s Producers

Documenting Popular Music

Release Date: 01/12/2019

British superstar Cliff Richard has released his first album of new material in 14 years, and the man who launched his career in the late 1950s as England’s answer to Elvis Presley, still sounds fresh and energetic.

 

The album features songs written by some of Richard’s long-time associates, including Terry Britten (“Devil Woman,” “What’s Love Got to Do with It”), Christopher Neville Eaton ("Lost in a Lonely World,” “Saviour’s Day”) and Chris Neil (“All I Need Is A Miracle”).  Additionally, long-time friend Olivia Newton-John sings a duet with Richard, who, at 78-years-old, has apparently found the vocal Fountain of Youth. 

 

The album also features four of Richard’s past hits that have been given new arrangements with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Producers Juliette Pochin and James Morgan were charged with classically enhancing songs such as “Devil Woman” and “Miss You Nights,” and the husband and wife team speak to journalist Robert Neil about the process (as well as the nervousness of presenting the songs to Richard). 

 

This episode also offers a brief profile of Richard for the American audience, where he was never able to achieve the same level of stardom as he did in the UK, where he is one of the best-selling artists of all time.

 

Notable Quotes about Sir Cliff Richard, who was knighted in 1995:

 

Bob Geldof

“It’s never been said, but without Cliff and (his backing group) The Shadows, there’s no English pop business. As George Harrison said: ‘No Shadows, no Beatles.’”

 

John Lennon

“The first English record that was anywhere near anywhere was “Move It” by Cliff Richard. Before, there’d been nothing.”

 

Sting

“Cliff Richard is, in my opinion, one of Britain’s finest singers technically and emotionally. I’ve been a fan since “Living Doll.” Long may he sing.”

 

Queen’s Freddie Mercury

“A tremendous influence on my early days as a performer.”