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Simple Pleasures


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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 8 1988)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Capitol
  • ASIN: B00000DQW7
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #39,794 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Don't Worry Be Happy
2. All I Want
3. Drive My Car
4. Simple Pleasures
5. Good Lovin'
6. Come To Me
7. Susie Q
8. Drive
9. Them Changes
10. Sunshine Of Your Love

Product Description

Don't Worry, Be Happy" is the opening tune of a collection of multi tracked songs on which all the voices are Bobby McFerrin's. Five originals including the title track "Simple Pleasures" are interwoven with "Drive My Car" (Lennon/ McCartney), "Good Lovin'," "Susie Q," "Them Changes" (Buddy Miles) and Sunshine Of Your Love. Throughout this recording is the percussive chest thump which Bobby pioneered and really must be considered the origin of innovative vocal percussion which has become so important to contemporary a cappella.

Customer Reviews

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Format: Audio CD
"Simple Pleasures" is singer Bobby McFerrin's popular 1988 album that made him a superstar. Although the album is best known for its Number One singalong hit "Don't Worry, be Happy", there are plenty of other enjoyable songs on this album including the funky "All I Want" and "Come To Me", the jolly doo-wop of the title track and the aggressive "Drive". In addition to these McFerrin originals, Bobby offers amazing cover versions of CCR's "Suzie Q", The Beatles "Drive My Car" and The Rascals "Good Lovin'". The two best covers are saved for last as the album closes with an excellent rendition of The Band of Gypsies classic "Them Changes" and a mouthdropping version of Cream's "Sunshine Of Your Love" (a big highlight in my opinion).
This is an excellent album from beginning to end and showcases Bobby McFerrin's talents at their finest. Did I mention that all of the above music was performed with vocals only? This makes listening to "Simple Pleasures" all the more intriguing.
Great stuff!!!
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Format: Audio CD
A cacophony of multilayered vocals as bass, clapping, funky beat, chest-tapping, soaring falsetto vocals, those are some adjectives that describe Bobby McFerrin, whose major contributions other than this album was the theme to the Cosby Show for at least one season. The songs on Simple Pleasures are pleasant, and for the cover songs, innovative interpretations. Despite being known as a jazz musician, I'm at a loss as what to file this experimental collection, as it defies classification.
Here's the song that I wrote... I mean, that won the Grammy for Record of the Year in 1988. I heard that McFerrin wasn't too chuffed about Bush Sr. using it on his campaign. Maybe he should've let Dukakis use it. Utilizing a reggae sound and spoken rap and monologue, "Don't Worry Be Happy" advises people to do just that: "in every life we have some trouble/but when you worry you make it double." He predicts that things will get better, so if you "ain't got no cash, ain't got no style, ain't got a gal to make you smile", well... you know what to do.
Some bluesy inflections and doo-wop come in the funk-driven beat-box melody of "All I Want".
In his cover of the Beatles' "Drive My Car", his pulsing noodling vocal bass is prominent, as is his approximation of the falsetto harmonies the Fabs did. A fun interpretation.
Some doo-wop influences come in on the title track, where he does a singsong commentary on a day in his life, such as getting up early in the morning, prepping his kids for school,... and he says that the simple pleasures are the things that make him happy.
His cover of the Rascals' "Good Lovin'" is engaging and comical when he does the falsetto chorus, set to his usual bass and chest tapping.
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Format: Audio CD
This is the disc that brought McFerrin to a deservedly wider audience. As such, it has broader, but to these ears, shallower appeal than a couple of albums that preceded it and his more adventurous work to follow.
I wonder if "A music fan from NY" bothered to listen to the whole album. "Don't Worry, Be Happy" is the first cut and easily disposed of. In the right mood, or to certain listeners, it can hit the spot, but it's easily the least interesting tune on the album (save, perhaps, for "Come to Me"). I suspect McFerrin himself shares "music fan"'s low opinion of the piece: I have seen him live in concert eight times and he has never once sung that song. That's probably why he released it to a rental car company for their TV ads.
There are several fabulous cuts that more than make up for the hit single. "Drive," which is probably just cool on disc, is amazing when McFerrin riffs on it live. Most of the cover tunes are pretty arresting, especially McFerrin's vocal rendition of a screaming lead guitar on "Sunshine Of Your Love," but probably don't wear that well over time. I've always liked Creedence's "Suzie Q," so McFerrin's version, with a spooky bass rhythm/harmony line, still gets me. And yet another Beatles cover (there's one on each of the two preceding albums) done well.
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Format: Audio CD
Regardless of your opinion of the song "Don't Worry, Be Happy," this album is worth considering for anyone trying to get into Mcferrin's music.
I bought this CD for the song "Drive", which I heard on Saturday Night Live and is the best live performance I have ever seen. (How many people do you know that can sing two notes at once? And in harmony, no less!) While it sounds great on the CD, it's absolutely nothing compared to the live version. Mcferrin uses multiple dubs on this CD, so I don't think it really shows how talented he is. Much better is an album like "The Voice," which is live and has no dubs.
Still, there are some songs on this CD that stand up to multiple listenings, such as the great Beatles cover "Drive My Car," "Simple Pleasures," the aforementioned "Drive," and "All I Want." Others are worth listening to once or twice but are rather forgettable.
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