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article imageFive for Fighting talks about 'Bookmarks' CD and symphony shows Special

By Markos Papadatos     Apr 25, 2014 in Music
Singer-songwriter John Ondrasik, better-known as Five for Fighting, will be playing a unique set of symphony shows (with a 30-piece orchestra) this summer throughout the United States.
The Grammy-nominated veteran musician took some time from his schedule to chat about his upcoming endeavors.
These symphony concerts will commence on July 12, 2014 at Mondavi Winery in Oakville, California. He will sing tunes from his latest studio album Bookmarks, which was released on September 17, 2013, as well as his bigger hits such as "100 Years," "Chances" and "Superman (It's Not Easy)". "I really enjoyed the last few years playing with a symphony and there's a lot of my songs that have major orchestral arrangements," he said. "They really stand out and they have rekindled my joy for music. Hopefully with the years to come, we can have more and more of these shows."
For his Bookmarks album, he selected the best 12 songs that he had. "I don't have a specific agenda in mind, but if you look back at my albums through my career, you can get a sense of where I am at in my life," he said. "There are a few more love songs on this record than usual and we are proud of them."
His album was co-produced by Derek Fuhrmann and Gregg Wattenberg ,who has collaborated with such musical acts as American Idol winner Phillip Phillips and Train. "It was so much fun to make a record with Gregg. He is a great producer, songwriter and a good friend. If it weren't for Gregg, I probably would have not made this record, and I enjoyed working with him again."
Five for Fighting listed "I Don't Want Your Love" as his favorite song on the album. "It harvests back to the classic songs that I grew up on: the songs of the 70s that have a beginning, middle and an end. It's very simple, since it's about a guy on a piano with a point of view and a song," he said.
Throughout his musical career, he has sold millions of albums and "Superman (It's Not Easy)" was a No. 1 hit single on the Adult Top 40 radio charts, as well as No. 2 on the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary charts; moreover, his signature tune "100 Years" spent 12 non-consecutive weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary charts in 2004, the longest-running chart-topping single on those charts that year.
His songs have appeared in over 350 films, television shows and advertisements, from HBO to the History Channel to ESPN. He is played on a regular basis on adult contemporary radio stations, including New York's 106.7 Lite FM. "Frankly, I'd rather have a song that you hear on the radio 10 years after it comes out, since there are a lot of popular songs that you hear now that you will never hear again after six months. My favorite songs are the ones that you hear over and over again 20, 30 or 40 years later. I am a still a Billy Joel, Elton John, Stevie Wonder and Beatles fan. There's a reason people still hear their music," he said.
He selected iconic singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell and Annie Lennox (from the Eurythmics) as his dream female duet choices in music.
Five for Fighting revealed that one of his proudest moments was performing "Superman (It's Not Easy)" for the "Concert for NY," for the heroes of September 11. "That was a very emotional and powerful moment and I was honored to be there," he recalled.
For more information on Five for Fighting and his upcoming tour dates, visit his official website.
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