Kuh Ledesma

Duet With Me

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In 2000, Philippine female singer Kuh Ledesma released the two-disc set Duet With Me. The album is a special production and emphasizes the harmony aspect of the recording. One disc features the album's 12 songs proper, with Kuh Ledesma singing both the melody and harmony (dubbed, of course), and the other disc enables listeners to sing along with Kuh Ledesma in either the melody or harmony mode. In the Philippines, tapes or CDs that allow a listener to sing along with the instrumentation (or in this case, the singer and the instrumentation) are called "minus one," and are quite popular. It is similar to karaoke, where people sing along with the instrumentation of a song without the original vocal. Duet With Me sees Kuh Ledesma singing a number of fine middle-of-the-road songs, a style of music she has often performed in the past. Opening the album is the timeless "Evergreen," a hit for Barbra Streisand in the 1970s. Kuh Ledesma's melody and harmony lines weave around each other seamlessly. The album's harmony arrangements were all done by Philippine arranger Babsie Molina. The harmony and vocal arrangements are often sophisticated and seemingly intricate, and are beautiful to hear. Kuh Ledesma's singing throughout the album is masterful. The album also contains a version of Philippine male singer Freddie Aguilar's "Anak" (Son), an international hit in the 1970s. Aside from the wondrous harmony, Kuh Ledesma's version features a punchy, jazz-inflected vocal and instrumental interlude not on the original version.

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