Ave Maria is a musical setting of the Hail Mary prayer. The Charles Gounod / J.S. Bach version is probably the more difficult, though Schubert’s is probably a bit more popular. Ave Maria is not a carol, but I count it as Christmas music for the reason that the first half of the Hail Mary is just the splicing together of a line from the Annunciation, when an angel comes to Mary to tell her she will bear the Son of God and says, “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women” (Luke 1:28), and a line from the Visitation a few verses later, when Mary visits Elizabeth, who says, “Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.” (Luke 1:42).
This is not a case of “look at how clever the pop star is,” though I do enjoy calling attention to those singers who can actually sing, but Andy Rawn has now pulled his own original upbeat version of Ave Maria out of the drawer and put it onto Youtube with a theme to help protect our planet and species such as the Dolphins.
Genre-mixing is nothing new. What made rock music so strong during its heyday wasn’t its attitude so much as its adaptability – it constantly renewed itself, drawing from any genre it could. Blues, folk, country, soul, jazz, even classical. Purism has always been an exception. These days, genre-bending is again a part of the popular music landscape -especially when pop meets classic. The Piano Guys, 2Cellos, The Tenors and IlVolo are prime examples of the success this hybrid style has brought.
Andy Rawn who is from an older generation and with a more whimsical pop approach is attempting to walk a similar path without trepidation or fear of the new technology available to get the job done. He knows that today the Deejay is no longer the great maker of stars that he once was. Moreover major record labels and A&R men in gray suits who once dominated the music scene are now not worth the paper they sign their names on.
Today the internet and the artist – in this case Andy Rawn, work together to create musical success. Music is now downloaded directly to the waiting public’s latest high tech gear and a singer’s popularity depends a great deal on their media hype and public appearances. Certainly, artists have to work harder than their predecessors, without the big companies and national radio stations pushing their latest releases. The new breed of singer composes many of his own songs and depends on his own resources to reach the people and to stay in the game. Over and above talent, this takes huge amounts of courage and lots of usable human energy. Luckily for Andy Rawn he has bucket loads of either available, together with a good dose of ambition thrown in too!
Obviously like any other artist, not everything Andy Rawn does is great or even good, but he keeps on plodding ahead relentlessly, releasing new material to better his craft and finally find that magical combination that in the end will take him into mass appeal, crossover country with the younger generation.
John Lennon once said: ‘Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.’ Andy Rawn knows that too, so his hybrid pop-classic version of Ava Maria is only the beginning!
MORE ABOUT ANDY RAWN:
Basso Andy Rawn studied opera at L.A. Conservatory of Music, Cal. State Northridge & U.C.L.A, and then began his vocal career by winning an audition to tour 37 U.S. States & Canada as Mephistopheles in Gounod’s Faust, under the auspices of Colombia Artists.
Andy also studied voice with two Super-Stars of the Metropolitan Opera: Baritone Richard Bonelli and Tenor Franco Corelli. Barbra Streisan’s Publicist Dick Guttman consulted with Andy in 2012 to discuss an opportunity to “Re-Unite Families” by enticing their children to attend American Songbook Tribute Concerts.
Continuing in 2015, Andy is the acting Director of a new SONGS Of MANY LANDS Recital Series which brought Peru’s Tenor John Schofield to L.A. for a triumph singing together in October 2013. Andy is now becoming known as an Internet inspiration called “The SINGER Guy” bringing his own surprising Pop beats to internationally favorite Classical Songs.
OFFICIAL LINKS: Artist Website