Big Blue Ball

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Big Blue Ball
Big Blue Ball.jpg
Studio album by Big Blue Ball (Peter Gabriel and Various Artists)
Released June 24, 2008
Recorded 1991–2007
Genre World
Label Real World, Rykodisc
Producer Peter Gabriel, Karl Wallinger, Stephen Hague
Peter Gabriel chronology
Big Blue Ball
Scratch My Back
Alternative cover
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[2]

Big Blue Ball is an album by multiple artists which "grew from 3 recording weeks" at Peter Gabriel's Real World Studios in the summers of 1991, 1992, and 1995.[3] It is Peter Gabriel's fourteenth album project overall.

In production for more than 18 years, "Big Blue Ball" is a project featuring several artists from all around the world working together. Gabriel said that although the initial recording was finished by 1995, "the tapes were left in a mess and it's taken this long to sort out." Producer Stephen Hague was finally called in to sort out the project.

Guests on the album include Wendy Melvoin of Wendy & Lisa, Sinéad O'Connor, Karl Wallinger (of World Party), Natacha Atlas, and Papa Wemba. Gabriel takes the lead vocals on several tracks on the album. A mix of western, African, and Asian musicians are also included.[4]

Big Blue Ball was launched in America in June, 24th, 2008. "After all these years, it's a fine wine ready to be drunk," says Peter Gabriel, "It was the most fun music making I've ever had." It was released thanks to a venture-capital trust initiative. Bosses at London-based firm Ingenious raised more than $4 million (£2 million) to help promote the release in the US. The venture capitalists, Gabriel, and his Real World Limited partners, created a new joint venture company, High Level Recordings Limited, to oversee the release of the album. The new album deal covers the North America territory, where Gabriel is currently out of contract. The worldwide distribution of the album will be dealt by Proper Music Distribution.[5][6]

The first track released from the project was "Whole Thing", included on the soundtrack album for the TV series, Long Way Down. A version of "Burn You Up, Burn You Down" was also included on Gabriel's 2003 compilation album Hit, with a radio edit released as a single.

There are two CD editions of the album with different covers; the music is the same on both.

A limited edition of 1000 copies of the album was released on blue vinyl, from Rykodisc.[7]

The digital download versions of the album contain different bonus content depending on the country. UK download stores include the track "Whole Thing (Adrian Sherwood & Jazzwad Remix)". US download stores include the track "Habibe (Stefan Goodchild Remix)" and a digital booklet. Both versions include the "Story of the Big Blue Ball, Pt. 1" video.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Whole Thing (Original Mix)" (featuring Francis Bebey, Alex Faku, Tim Finn, Peter Gabriel, Karl Wallinger, Andy White)
  2. "Habibe" (featuring Natacha Atlas, Hossam Ramzy, Neil Sparkes, The Hossam Ramzy Egyptian Ensemble (Adel Eskander, Wael Abu Bakr, Momtaz Talaat) )
  3. "Shadow" (featuring Juan Cañizares, Papa Wemba)
  4. "Altus Silva"[8] (featuring Joseph Arthur, Ronan Browne, Deep Forest, James McNally, Iarla Ó Lionáird, Vernon Reid)
  5. "Exit Through You" (featuring Joseph Arthur, Peter Gabriel, Karl Wallinger)
  6. "Everything Comes From You" (featuring Richard Evans, Joji Hirota, Sevara Nazarkhan, Sinéad O'Connor, Guo Yue)
  7. "Burn You Up, Burn You Down" (featuring Billy Cobham, Peter Gabriel, The Holmes Brothers, Wendy Melvoin, Arona N’diaye, Jah Wobble)
  8. "Forest" (featuring Levon Minassian, Arona N’Diaye, Vernon Reid, Hukwe Zawose)
  9. "Rivers" (featuring Vernon Reid, Márta Sebestyén, Karl Wallinger)
  10. "Jijy" (featuring Arona N’Diaye, Rossy, Jah Wobble)
  11. "Big Blue Ball" (featuring Peter Gabriel, Manu Katché, Karl Wallinger)
  12. "Habibe (Stefan Goodchild Remix)" - US digital download bonus track
  13. "Whole Thing (Adrian Sherwood & Jazzwad Remix)" - UK digital download bonus track
  14. "Story of the Big Blue Ball, Pt. 1" - digital download bonus video

References and notes[edit]

  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Rolling Stone review
  3. ^ Big Blue Ball Big Blue Ball Website.
  4. ^ Gabriel Has A 'Ball' With Long-Gestating Album by Nigel Williamson, 4 August 2006.
  5. ^ Gabriel Deals a Blow to the Record Business by Paul Durman, 21 January 2007.
  6. ^ Gabriel Calls on Venture Capitalists to Help Album Launch — 24 January 2007.
  7. ^ Big Blue Ball (Limited Edition 150 Gram Blue Vinyl: 2LP)
  8. ^ Altus Silva is Latin for Deep Forest, whose members (Eric Mouquet and Michel Sanchez) provided the keyboards for the piece.

External links[edit]