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Harry Connick, Jr. Ventures into New Musical Territory with <i>Only You</i> - 2004-03-11

At age 36, Harry Connick, Jr., is one of today's busiest performers. In addition to being the father of three young daughters and a celebrated television and movie actor, Harry continues to devote much of his time to his music career. Frank Sinatra once referred to the singer and pianist as "The Kid."

Critics were so convinced that Harry Connick, Jr. was going to be the next Frank Sinatra, they nicknamed him "The Vice Chairman of the Board." It's true, when Harry burst onto the scene in the late-1980s, his sound and style were so similar to Sinatra's, it was hard to tell the two apart. One big difference is their geographical backgrounds: Sinatra was born and raised in New Jersey, and Connick, Jr. comes from the birthplace of jazz, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Very few have captured the essence of New Orleans in song better than native son Harry Connick, Jr. On any one of his 20 albums - from solo piano instrumentals, ballads and funk to big band, Christmas songs and motion picture soundtracks - you can always hear a little bit of that distinctive New Orleans sound. It's best described as laid-back, soulful and easy to dance to.

Harry's new album Only You is no exception.

Harry Connick, Jr. is not only busy, he's also unpredictable. His latest effort, Only You, named after the hit single by The Platters, ventures into new musical territory for Harry; the '50s and '60s.

And what a musical era it was: "Save The Last Dance For Me" by The Drifters; "Goodnight My Love" by Jesse Belvin; "My Blue Heaven" by fellow New Orleans crooner Fats Domino; and Stevie Wonder's "For Once In My Life."

Also featured on Only You are American pop classics like "The Very Thought Of You," "More," "You Don't Know Me," "I Only Have Eyes For You," and an original tune called "Other Hours." Accompanying Harry are his colleagues Neal Caine on bass and Arthur Latin the Second on drums, a two-man string section and a 13-piece big band. Harry arranged, orchestrated and conducted all of the songs on the album.

Next up for Harry Connick, Jr. is a 16-city U.S. tour which includes a stop at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in Louisiana on April 30.