Los Angeles, CA. (Arista Records) -- Lightning strikes twice in 2006 for Arista recording artist Barry Manilow, as massive online fan club and QVC shopping network advance orders, coupled with six figure sales at retail, plus an unprecedented television blitz and direct response advertising campaign, add up to the biggest sales week of Manilow's highly successful career, with a #2 Nielsen SoundScan debut with 201,904 copies sold, a 30% sales increase over his Fifties album released just 9 months ago. THE GREATEST SONGS OF THE SIXTIES is his 13-song tribute that arrived in stores on October 31st and the follow-up to the RIAA platinum The Greatest Songs Of The Fifties, which skyrocketed back on the chart this week at #116 with a 205% increase and was the first album in Barry Manilow's career to debut at #1 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart upon its release this year on January 31st. Manilow is the only artist of 2006 to have two albums debut in the top 2 chart positions in the same calendar year.
The pre-release of THE GREATEST SONGS OF THE SIXTIES was kicked off on Saturday, October 21st when Manilow performed live from Chicago for the QVC audience. More than 43,000 units ordered marked the highest single-hour music sales event in QVC's twenty-year history. At the same time, a special pre-order campaign at the www.manilow.com website ensured fans of receiving the new album in its first week of release. Online, the album blanketed the web with album premieres on AOL, MSN, Windows Media, MP3 & Artist Direct, and Clearchannel.com. Also, Manilow was everywhere on television with appearances on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," "CNN," "A&E Biography," "Good Morning America," "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," "The Colbert Report," "The View, "The Martha Stewart Show", "Rachael Ray," "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson," "The Megan Mullally Show" and multiple appearances on "Entertainment Tonight," and "The Insider." Stay tuned for his appearance later this month on the American Music Awards and Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
The two current Fifties and Sixties albums mark the winning reunion in the studio for co-producers Manilow and Clive Davis, Arista founder and BMG U.S. Chairman & CEO. THE GREATEST SONGS OF THE SIXTIES also caps one of the most remarkable years of Manilow's long and storied career, which includes the success of 2006's The Greatest Songs From The Fifties (his first #1 chart album in nearly three decades), the renewal extension of his exclusive performing contract with the Las Vegas Hilton Theater ("Manilow: Music & Passion") through 2008, and winning his second career Emmy Award (this past August), when "Manilow: Music & Passion" was awarded Outstanding Individual Performance In A Variety Or Music Program.
Each song on THE GREATEST SONGS OF THE SIXTIES is a classic in its own right – from his remake of the Righteous Brothers "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling'" (1965) to the Beatles' "And I Love Her"(1964), to Herb Alpert's "This Guy's In Love With You" (1968), the Lettermen's "When I Fall In Love" (1962) and Burt Bacharach's "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head" (1969). Like the '60s itself, the album covers many genres, from its recollection of Herman's Hermits' "There's A Kind Of Hush (All Over The World)"(1967), to Bobby Vinton's "Blue Velvet" (1963), to Jackie DeShannon's "What The World Needs Now Is Love" (1965). Manilow also pays tribute to some of America's greatest singers, including Dean Martin on "Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime" (1964) and Frankie Valli's "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" (1967). Two artists whose legacies were recalled on The Greatest Songs Of The Fifties are again paid homage on the new album, namely Elvis Presley with "Can't Help Falling In Love" (1962) and Frank Sinatra with "Strangers In The Night" (1966). One of the highlights of the album is a great duet with The Association of their two #1 hits "Cherish" (1966) and "Windy" (1967).
With worldwide record sales exceeding 75 million, his work as a singer, songwriter, arranger and producer over the course of more than 40 albums has earned Barry Manilow the highest honors. He sits on the Board of Governors of the National Academy of Jazz, and in June 2002, he was inducted into the National Academy of Popular Music's Songwriters Hall of Fame, alongside Ashford & Simpson, Michael Jackson, Randy Newman, and Sting. In addition to his own foundation, the Manilow Fund for Health and Hope, other involvements include The Prince's Trust, United Way, the Starlight Foundation, numerous organizations fighting the battle against AIDS, and many others. He is the national spokesperson for the Foundation Fighting Blindness, Honorary Chairman of the Palm Springs Art Museum and a Founder of the Music Center of Los Angeles.