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Editors’ Notes

Even 25 years after Bobby McFerrin’s breakthrough album Don’t Worry, Be Happy yielded the hit of the same name (which became the first a cappella single to top the Billboard charts), his music still radiates a calm and healing quality. Spirityouall is McFerrin’s take on African-American spirituals. He recorded it in loving tribute to his father, Robert McFerrin, whose 1957 album Deep River was a pinnacle in bringing this historic music to the mainstream. This set opens with “Everytime,” a rendition of "Every Time I Feel the Spirit" that recalls soft jazz and folk; the roots of its lyrics go back all the way to before the U.S. Civil War. “Swing Low” fuses elements of country, gospel, New Age, jazz, folk, and soul to make an ethereally calming reworking of Wallis Willis' 1862 American Negro spiritual "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot." Throughout Spirityouall, McFerrin shares vocal duties with GRAMMY®-winning R&B singer Lisa Fischer, whose low timbre both contrasts and blends with his high tenor. By taking on “I Shall Be Released,” McFerrin takes Bob Dylan’s original to its gospel-inspired home.

Customer Reviews


Just got back from his show in Reno. What an unexpected experience. A beautiful set of songs from a tremendous artist whose music has been a friend of mine for 25 years. I knew the title, but I thought it was his tour. I didn't realize he had a new album coming until tonight. 10 grammies… I think he deserves an 11th.

A lovely new direction by a sterling artist

I heard McFerrin perform most of these songs live in Boston. One word: WOW. McFerrin's music always leaves me feeling as though I've heard something otherworldly, but there was something especially poignant about his trademark style applied to gospel music/spirituals. Only McFerrin can make an audience laugh and cry during the same song (see his remix of "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands"), but my favorites were his original pieces, especially "Jesus Makes it Good" and "Rest/Yes Indeed." I continue to be in awe of Bobby McFerrin's incredible originality and artistry. This new album doesn't disappoint.


My wife and I went to the Disney Concert Hall, and sang with him... it was an amazing concert.


Born: March 11, 1950 in New York, NY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Vocal virtuoso Bobby McFerrin ranks among the most distinctive and original singers in contemporary music -- equally adept in jazz, pop, and classical settings, his octave-jumping trademark style, with its rhythmic inhalations and stop-on-a-dime shifts from falsetto to deep bass notes often sounds like the work of at least two or three singers at once, while at the same time sounding quite unlike anyone else. The son of husband-and-wife classical singers, McFerrin was born in New York City on March...
Full Bio