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Coming Soon: Mexican-American Soprano Barbara Padilla

Dan Massie

Promotion can be deceptive; we've all been duped into expecting the latest and greatest this or that, only to be profoundly disappointed, maybe even out some bucks for the CD or online download. That said, and yes it can be regarded a disclaimer, I want to share what looks like the real deal, waiting in the wings, with only the details of the release date still to be determined. Line up behind me for this anticipated new release.

What's the big fuss about, and why am I chomping at the bit to hear more? My excitement is to do with an emerging artist, based in Houston but with roots in Guadalajara, Mexico. Her name is Barbara Padilla. If the name seems familiar, or the image rings the bell of recognition, then you might have seen Padilla on the television talent show NBC's "America's Got Talent." She was first runner-up, I am told, in 2009. Normally, this sort of thing doesn't impress me. In fact, I pay scant attention to what seems more 3-ring circus than a serious search for talent. However, a couple of things have me thinking otherwise regarding Ms. Padilla.

My friend Paul Blakemore has a solid track record when it comes to working on award winning recordings. Formerly a recording and mastering engineer for the Telarc label, Paul now works for The Concord Group, based in Cleveland, OH. I'll let Paul take it from here:

Credit Barbara Padilla
Barbara Padilla at Guadalajara's Teatro Degollado.

  "I'm basically just a country hick from Abilene, TX, (and really glad about that!) But I've had such an interesting life. I've worked on about a dozen Grammy winning records in a wide range of categories, have myself been nominated 3 times, and I've won a Best Engineered Latin Grammy."

Paul then describes the second of two projects he is currently mastering: "The other record is by an incredible opera singer named Barbara Padilla, who is from Mexico, but now lives in Houston, TX. She was a winning contestant on America's Got Talent a few years ago, has recovered from stage 4 cancer, and is a deeply soulful musical talent. Look her up on Google. Her vocal performances will bring you to tears. Believe me, I've shed a few while working on this recording. Her new record is performed with the London Symphony Orchestra recorded at Abbey Road (!!) and produced by my colleague, Gregg Field, with whom I shared the Best Engineered Latin Grammy for the Arturo Sandoval, "Dear Diz" album."

Paul goes on to say that he is not aware of the release date, but this is something I will be keeping an eye on. Who says the record industry has gone bust?

Oh yeah! Still need convincing? Check out the video below:

James first introduced himself to KPAC listeners at midnight on April 8, 1993, presenting Dvorak's 7th Symphony played by the Cleveland Orchestra. Soon after, he became the regular overnight announcer on KPAC.