The Sheffield born Paul Carrack’s voice is one of the worlds great superpowers. Carrack got his start at 19 playing keyboards in Warm Dust for a handful of albums. From there, he formed ACE who had the massive international hit “How Long.” After they broke up in 1977 he played with Frankie Miller and joined Roxy Music as their keyboardist.
He put out a solo album in 1980, then joined Squeeze who had a rather massive hit with “Tempted” that featured Carrack on lead vocals. Around the same time he had a band called Noise to Go with Nick Lowe. That band became Nick Lowe and His Cowboy Outfit who not only put out two albums, they were John Hiatt’s backing band for Side Two of his Riding With The King record. Carrack did session work for the Pretenders and The Smiths for their debut album then he joined Mike and the Mechanics, logged a few seismic hits with them—you know, “The Living Years” and “Silent Running.” He became a member of Roger Waters’ touring band, put out another solo record, had a hit with “Don’t Shed A Tear”—then formed a band with Rupert Hine, rejoined Squeeze for the Some Fantastic Place record, had a song he co-wrote with Don Felder and Timothy B Schmitt of The Eagles covered by the Eagles and that track ended up being the most played song in the United States in 1995. Carrack kept up his solo career, but still had time to join Ringo Starr’s All Star Band, collaborate with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and join Eric Clapton’s band. Over the years he’s also played with Simply Red, BB King, Elton John and the list goes on and on. There’s actually a great BBCFour documentary about Paul called “The Man With The Golden Voice.” Paul’s new album One On One is his 18th solo album and it’s fabulous. A stirring collection that’s about as soulfully precise as it gets, Carrack’s voice is filled with a timeless blend of warmth and groove and this album proves that time can’t touch him. He sounds as effortless and as affecting as ever. It’s yet another winning entry into a pretty flawless discography. In this conversation, Carrack talks to Alex about staying creative during a pandemic, what he learned about leading his own band from watching Clapton, and why his son think he’s cool for playing on The Smiths’ debut. He also talks about his new album, wanting to make a country record, and how Elvis Costello had the idea for him to sing “Tempted.”
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