Tag Archives: Emilia Mitiku

Alfie Boe and Me: Changing Musical Tastes

Part of the appeal and fun of being an Alfie Boe fan is the friends I’ve made along the way…and there a lot of you out there that I would never have known had it not been for Alfie. Chatting to one of my closest friends recently, we were struck by how much the music we listen to now has been influenced by Alfie and his musical choices.  Some of you will be amazed to hear that I do actually listen to other artists (oh alright, it’s not often!) but a lot of the music I’ve discovered in the last couple of years has been driven by Alfie’s musical train.  So the next logical step was to write about it!

Looking through my iPod I now have music from Led Zeppelin, Bonnie Raitt, The Clint Boon Experience, The D’Oyly Carte, Emilia Mitiku, Laura Wright, Jimi Hendrix, The Who, John Owen-Jones, Ramin Karimloo, Al Vosper.  For me, this diverse group of artists has only one thing in common: Alfie Boe introduced me to them.

Obviously some are a lot more well known than others (I can just imagine the gasp of horror from Linda W at my only really listening to Led Zeppelin in the last year or so) and although I was aware of them I never considered listening to them until Alfie sang their songs or worked with them.  This is certainly the case with The Who and Quadrophenia which I listened to for the first time two weeks ago in preparation for Alfie Boe and Quadrophenia – I can honestly say that I really liked it and have listened to some of it again…and I didn’t have to!  It goes without saying that I prefer Alfie’s take on I’m One and Love Reigns O’er Me.

Alfie’s well known saying “there’s only two types of music, good and bad” has obviously rubbed off on me or maybe I’m just more willing to embrace new music as I find myself not only listening to but buying music I had previously discarded as being “not my thing”.  This is definitely the case with Clint Boon; I was not a fan of the Inspiral Carpets and wasn’t particularly keen to listen to the Clint Boon Experience albums even though Alfie was featured.  Of course, when I did listen, I liked it (and not just for Alfie!).  As I write this, the thought occurs that super fans can sometimes be categorised by their willingness to go and do whatever their favourite artist asks or mentions…I leave that with you for later discussion.

One of the joys of my musical education with Alfie has been finding out about extremely talented musicians who I would almost certainly never have heard of otherwise.  These include Laura Wright and John Owen-Jones who I have had the pleasure of interviewing and the awesome Al Vosper, Emilia Mitiku and Michael Boe.  They all produce the sort of music I have always listened to but I am absolutely sure their work would have passed me by without Alfie.

As always, I would love to hear about your musical education with Alfie – what do you now listen to that you didn’t before, or perhaps you have been drawn back to something you haven’t listened to for years?  Leave me a comment in the box!

I’ll leave you with one of my favourite songs from the Storyteller tour, Jimi Hendrix’s Angel (thanks to Linda W for sharing):

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On This Day, 22 March 2013, Alfie Boe Sang…

Dimming of the Day with Emilia Mitiku on the first date of the Storyteller tour.  This was the first time we had heard Alfie and Emilia sing together and what a collaboration!  An inspired choice  for both their voices and ensured we were totally familiar with the song when we heard it  on the 2013 album, Trust (albeit with Shawn Colvin).  Lots of you like this song as you voted it into the top 5 of the Alfie Boe Best Duet poll!

Emilia is a Swedish singer songwriter who I had never heard of until the Storyteller tour although when I first heard her I immediately bought her album, I Belong To You. Emilia, daughter of renowned Ethiopian singer Teshome Mitiku, grew up listening to the smoky tones of Etta, Ella, Eartha and Billie but her first brush with musical fame came via the pop world.  In 1999, Emilia Rydberg as she was then known, had a world wide smash hit with Big Big World.  That sound is light years away from the largely self written I Belong To You.  Click here to buy her album.

Here are Alfie and Emilia in Birmingham where we also see Alfie’s unintentional joke at Emilia’s expense ! – thanks to Linda:

Dimming of the Day remains my favourite song from the Storyteller tour and I have since listened to the many other versions recorded since it was written by Richard Thompson and recorded with Linda Thompson in 1975.  The Tom Jones version on his 2012 album Spirit in the Room is magical – click here for that album.

Alfie’s 2013 album Trust is available here:

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Fans Favourite Alfie Boe Duet – The Results!

And the winner is:

Yes, the winner is Bryn Terfel with 35% of the votes!  The vote was very close though, Laura Wright and Barcelona were a close second with 27% and Emilia Mitiku and Dimming of the Day was third with 25%.

Bryn led for most of the way although he was initially lagging behind Laura and Emilia.  I suppose we shouldn’t be surprised at the result, as classical won the previous Alfie Boe poll by a country mile.


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Alfie Boe Favourite Duet: Short List: Emilia Mitiku

Emilia Mitiku is a Swedish singer songwriter that I first heard of through, you guessed it, Alfie Boe!  To be specific, I first heard her name when she was announced as the support act for Alfie’s 2013 Storyteller tour.  I found her on YouTube and immediately bought her album, I Belong To You, falling in love with the melodious jazz / pop tones of the songs.  It was an absolute pleasure to watch her perform both as Alfie’s support act and duetting with him on Dimming of the Day and Angel from Montgomery.  Anyone who missed her show missed out on a treat.  Click here to buy Emilia’s album on Amazon.

Emilia, daughter of renowned Ethiopian singer Teshome Mitiku, grew up listening to the smoky tones of Etta, Ella, Eartha and Billie but her first brush with musical fame came via the pop world.  In 1999, Emilia Rydberg as she was then known, had a world wide smash hit with Big Big World.  That sound is light years away from the largely self written I Belong To You.  Of this musical journey, Emilia says “These melodies were probably always there, they just took their time getting out”.

Enjoy Emilia and Alfie at the Royal Albert Hall, April 2013:

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Favourite Alfie Boe Duet – The Short List!

So, for a week now you’ve all been voting for your favourite Alfie Boe duet...and the results are now in!

Of course, if you subscribe, you’ll already be aware of the short list – if you want to get in on the action before anyone else, subscribe now!

The voting was very competitive and although there has been a clear leader right from the start, the singers bringing up the rear have changed over the week.

If your favourite made it through, fantastic, why not vote for them again?  If your favourite is missing, click on the new video short list to help you choose a new one!

Watch out for regular updates and profiles on the short listed singers – if you subscribe, you” also get sneak previews on the way the voting goes…before everyone else!


Alfie Boe: Vote for Your Favourite Duet

Last week, I asked you all for your nominations for your favourite singer to perform with Alfie, either live or recorded (click here).

Well, you responded in your numbers and the nominations are in and the vote is ready!

All the nominations are listed in the YouTube playlist below, to help you deicde – some clips are longer than others but they’re all there!

After you’ve voted, don’t forget to subscribe – you’ll get a sneak peek at the short list before everyone else!


Duets with Alfie Boe – Choose Your Favourite

Alfie Boe has duetted with many people in the course of his career, in both his classical and more recent repertoire.  I have my favourites in both genres and I’m willing to bet a fair amount that all of you have your own favourites too.  So, let’s put it to the vote and choose our favourite artist to duet with Alfie so far.

Just let me know on the contact form below, which artists you like best and which song (if they have sung more than one).  Reasons for liking them might be good too!  And, if you really can’t choose, there’s no restriction on the number of artists or songs you can nominate – the more the merrier.

So, if you’re a classical fan or prefer Alfie’s more recent offerings, let me know!  Your choices can be anything you like, live in concert (or in kitchens!) or recorded, as long as they are a duet.

One of my favourites (I have many) is Dimming of the Day with Emilia Mitiku.  The video I have chosen is from Blackpool – thanks Annie x



Alfie Boe – Trust: Best Ever Album Due for US Release

Alfie Boe’s latest album, Trust, hit UK stores in November 2013 and quickly went gold. For US fans, their chance to own Trust comes towards the end of April when Capitol releases the album in America.
So, what do I think of the album? Having listened to Trust a lot since the release date, I can honestly say that I think this is Alfie’s best album to date. Long term fans will know that Alfie has been heading in this musical direction for a while now. The last three tracks of the previous album, Storyteller, are imbued with a blues, country and gospel sound that leads straight into Trust, particularly the glorious Glory, Glory Hallelujah and Rosie. My favourite songs are Keep Me In Your Heart and Glory Glory although there is a special place in my heart for Trust, the first song on any album to written especially for Alfie. Fans have long voiced the opinion that original material would be wonderful and it is definitely worth the wait.
There are a few songs on the album that are completely new to me but I love having my musical knowledge challenged and broadened by Alfie and have enjoying getting to know Forever Young and God Give Me Strength. Dimming of the Day is beautifully sung by Shawn Colvin, an artist I am enjoying getting to know but I have to confess a sneaking wish for the lovely tones of Emilia Mitiku, who sang with Alfie on his 2013 tour.
To give you a taste of the tracks, the video below was taken by Linda Wellington at the Huwawei Winter Concert at the Royal Festival Hall on 1 December 2013:

Since I first heard the first snippets from Alfie Boe’s latest album “Trust” two tracks stood out for me: Rosie and Glory, Glory. I defy anyone to sit still and not dance to Glory, Glory, in particular.  From talking to other fans, it was obvious that I was not alone in the opinion that those were the two tracks we wanted to hear live, above all others.  Well, it seems that good things happen to those who wait (in this case, we didn’t have to wait very long) as Alfie treated us to Rosie and Glory, Glory.  Playing the entire second act, Alfie and his extremely talented band (Murray Gould, Matt White, Richard Causon et al) burst into Rosie first off before moving easily into the album title song.  Rosie was everything we had hoped it would be, a fabulously foot tapping gospel infused number.  On this evidence, Rosie will remain a favourite for the live shows for some time.