Personnel: Vanessa Carlton (vocals, piano); John Goux (guitar, dulcimer, sitar); Ron Fair (harmonica, organ, vibraphone); Alex Al (electric upright bass); Chuck Berghofer (upright bass); Abe Laboriel Jr. (drums); Luis Conte (percussion).
Recorded at IGA Studios, Santa Monica, California, Henson Studios, Hollywood, California and Royaltone Studios, Burbank, California.
"A Thousand Miles" was nominated for the 2003 Grammy Awards for Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year and Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocals.
Although comparisons to fellow piano-playing chanteuses Fiona Apple and Tori Amos would be the easiest and laziest to make, 22-year old Vanessa Carlton's confident mastery of the 88's is more reminiscent of Ben Folds if he had Jewel's voice. Carlton's songs on BE NOT NOBODY deal with the emotional heft of love and life minus the collateral damage of physical and psychological abuse.
Armed with classical training (thanks to her piano teacher mum) and a honey-soaked vocal style, Carlton burned up the airwaves and MTV's heavy rotation with the breezy hit "A Thousand Miles," and there are plenty more tricks up the sleeves of this former ballerina's Danskin. When she's not giving herself over to infatuation on the yearning "Pretty Baby" or hinting at a dark side on her version of The Rolling Stones' "Paint It Black," she's hiding her vulnerability behind a barrage of pointed piano runs on the Folds-flavored "Unsung." Equally impressive are the jittery neo-funk of "Prince," the Suzanne Vega-like "Twilight," and the soaring pop of "Ordinary Day."
What the critics say...
Q (10/02, p.102) - 3 stars out of 5 - "...Carlton sounds earthier, wiser and in for the long haul..."
- Ordinary Day
- Thousand Miles, A
- Pretty Baby
- Paint It Black