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Chinese Wall

Philip Bailey Audio CD
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 41.95
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1. Photogenic Memory
2. I Go Crazy
3. Walking On The Chinese Wall
4. For Every Heart That's Been Broken
5. Go
6. Easy Lover
7. Show You The Way To Love
8. Time Is A Woman
9. Woman
10. Children Of The Ghetto

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Most helpful customer reviews
Format:Audio CD
"Chinese Wall" is the "solo" debut by Earth Wind and Fire's Phillip Bailey. It might be a bit unfair to Bailey, but 80s superstar Phil Collins plays a major role on many dimensions of this album. Collins plays instruments or provides vocals on every track on this album. Collins also serves as the album's producer and is co-writer of the mega duet he does with Bailey "Easy Lover" Collins takes his long-time studio and tour musician Darryl Stuermer to play guitars on many of the tracks. Despite the heavy hand of Phil Collins, much of this album still has the footprint of Phillip Bailey on it. Bailey's unique voice is heard throughout the album and contributes to some of the songwriting. For Collins, the mid 80s was his hey-day - he worked with his solo career, Genesis, producing artists like Bailey and Eric Clapton, and even joining Led Zeppelin at Live Aid.
This album is a good album, but for a solo album it seems to suffer from 'too many cooks in the kitchen' and as a result, I don't feel there is the type of cohesion between the tracks that I would expect from the album. There are TWENTY songwriters on this album (including Collins and Bailey in the total) - with a different combination of songwriters on each track. That is way too many songwriters for an album. As a result there are some good songs and some weaker songs.. Producer Phil Collins at getting the most out of Phillip Bailey on each of the tracks, but it is tougher to get the cohesion I normally look for on every effort. A little more cohesion, I would have rated this album much higher.
For the most part, this is more of an R&B album and Bailey's vocals shine in many areas.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  19 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent highlighting of the power and grace of P. Bailey. Aug. 6 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
"Photogenic Memory" already sells you quickly on this collector's CD, esp. if you are a musician of any genre and are familiar w/ the percussion talents of Paulinho da Costa. For fans like me who have liked Brazilian themes since the late 60's, I know Paulinho's work from his collaborations w/ Sergio Mendes. (See "Primal Roots" for classic examples of Mendes/da Costa work.)
Of course, the most fun track is #6, "Easy Lover", featuring the excellent counterbalancing of the Bailey/Collins voices forefronting Phil's wonderful cabbage-chopping work on his trap set. One can almost see the silvery flashiness of his Zildjian Platinum crashes, and underlining punctuations on the high hat. Complimenting everything perfectly are the work of the other musicians, esp. Nathan West's bass lines: sensual, throbbing, and definitive, but not overpowering. Somehow, even has many times as I have heard this number on FM, nothing can surpass playing this! CD track on quad stereo w/ the equalizer pushed up a bit to further highlight Phillip's E,W, & F signature range interweaving around Phil's primary melodic path.
This listener's favorite, however, esp. because of its incredible change in mood and texture from its previous track is "Show You The Way To Love". It demonstrates Phillip's own depth, sensitivity, and capabilities to interpret his music and lyrics beyond his mesmerizingly viscous falsetto style.
And, if nothing else grabs you listening to this CD (even my Deaf friends keep borrowing it to feel its "biorhythms", by the way), Phillip's profile cover photo, the photo of The Great Wall, and the inside photos of the band, producers, and studio guys at work and at play shows just how much fun it must have been to realize the end product. Check it out: there are even neat b&w photos of our buddy, Phil Collins, w/ more hair than I've ever seen on his cute, little noggin!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have CD Nov. 8 2002
By e.s. ortiz-gonzalez - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
While overall this CD is fine -a swan song for the R&B genre?-, for me the song here -the one that makes me rate this album with five stars- is "Walking on the Chinese Wall". That song -that incredible song- stands out easily between the other songs here, including the smash hit "Easy Lover". For those who have heard this song before, they will agree with me that once you listen to it with your eyes closed -a good set of headphones is a must- you will experience an overwhelming, near unspeakable experience that leaves you high and dry and wanting to listen to it all over again and again and again. Yes, "Easy Lover", "Children of the Ghetto" and "Show You The Way To Love" are nice songs, where Phillip Bailey sings beautifully. But in "Walking..." his singing stands as class apart. His voice plays joyfully with the drums, the chorus voices, the bass... gosh, believe me when I say -and I'm not exaggerating- that this song is a landmark of the eighties, a pristine example of the good great music that were done at that time. Tempted? Why not! I'm sure you will love it. So check this out. enjoy.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have CD Nov. 8 2002
By e.s. ortiz-gonzalez - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
While overall this CD is fine -a swan song for the R&B genre?-, for me the song here -the one that makes me rate this album with five stars- is "Walking on the Chinese Wall". That song -that incredible song- stands out easily between the other songs here, including the smash hit "Easy Lover". For those who have heard this song before, they will agree with me that once you listen to it with your eyes closed -a good set of headphones is a must- you will experience an overwhelming, near unspeakable experience that leaves you high and dry and wanting to listen to it all over again and again and again. Yes, "Easy Lover", "Children of the Ghetto" and "Show You The Way To Love" are nice songs, where Phillip Bailey sings beautifully. But in "Walking..." his singing stands as class apart. His voice plays joyfully with the drums, the chorus voices, the bass... gosh, believe me when I say -and I'm not exaggerating- that this song is a landmark of the eighties, a pristine example of the good great music that were done at that time. Tempted? Why not! I'm sure you will love it. So check this out. enjoy.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HE JUST KEEPS GETTING BETTER!!! April 5 1999
By GERRI DOMINO (devotionewf@webtv.net) - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
THIS IS A WONDERFUL CD THAT YOU WILLENJOY HEARING OVER AND OVER AGAIN.IN "FOR EVERY HEART THATS BEEN BROKEN" YOU CAN FEEL THE SENSITIVITYOF PHILIP BAILEY. THEN THERE IS THEROMANTIC "SHOW YOU THE WAY TO LOVE"THIS IS ONE OF THOSE CD'S WHERE ITSREALLY DIFFICULT TO CHOOSE A FAVORITE.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Music Oct. 14 2005
By Sing Brotha Sing - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Amazing 1984 release from the co-lead singer of Earth, Wind, and Fire, Philip Bailey. The album is clearly a work of Phil Collins, with the signature horns and dynamic drumming, not to mention the duet with the two Phils (Easy Lover). But Mr. Bailey stamps his own name on here, as well, with his one-of-a-kind astonishing voice. Each song has is its own style, ranging between rock and R&B, but with the number of songwriters on the album, we are given a diverse set of tracks. Yet with the production of Mr. Collins and the performance of Mr. Bailey, everything works just fine. Get this CD and treat yourself to a musical gem.
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