Various Artists

Here, There and Everywhere: The Songs of the Beatles

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Windham Hill never has embraced the full-on pop that was the Beatles' stock-in-trade, but then the Beatles are universal -- any musician, regardless of genre, has heard at least some of their music and most know it very well. So it should come as no surprise that every musician, from classical to heavy metal, has had the temptation to offer their own interpretation of classic Beatles songs, and Windham Hill's Here, There & Everywhere: Songs of the Beatles is simply another in a long line of Beatles covers. For dyed-in-the-wool Fab Four fans, it may be among the most frustrating, since pop fans are often not New Age fans. And it is true that some of the cuts on the tribute simply float away into the ether, relying entirely too much on texture. Similarly, others sound a little off -- strangely, George Winston's "Martha My Dear" sounds too crisp for this setting -- but most fall into a middle ground, where a familiar melody is reworked into languid, atmospheric instrumental numbers (with the exception, of course, of Tuck & Patti's "I Will" and Sean Harkness' "Blackbird," which add soulful vocals to a new acoustic template). Naturally, this will not win over any doubters, especially pop fans that will just assume that these are mangled versions of old favorites, but fans of Windham Hill will likely to find this an entertaining diversion, even if it is a little uneven.

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