Copyright 1999 Billboard
November 5, 1999
LENGTH: 404 words
SECTION: Daily News
HEADLINE: Aimee Mann Readies Soundtrack, Solo Album
BYLINE: Jim Bessman
Aimee Mann contributes eight new songs to the Reprise soundtrack for the forthcoming New Line film "Magnolia," which opens nationally on Jan. 7. But she has also readied "Bachelor No. 2," her first proper solo album in over three years, for a late December release on her own SuperEgo label.
One of the most critically acclaimed female artists of recent years and the former vocalist for '80s pop group 'Til Tuesday, Mann was approached by "Magnolia" director Paul Thomas Anderson to contribute to the film's soundtrack. "Magnolia" stars Tom Cruise, Julianne Moore, and John C. Reilly; the latter two who appeared in Anderson's 1997 movie "Boogie Nights."
"He heard the record I was working on and was really excited about some of the songs and started working on a screenplay. Then I would read some of the screenplay and play some music and fit it in thematically," Mann tells Billboard. "There were a couple songs that were written that way, back and forth." The songs "Save Me" and "You Do" were written expressly for the movie.
The "Magnolia" soundtrack and the release of "Bachelor No. 2" mark a welcome return to visibility for Mann, who has endured label trouble for most of her solo career. Her solo debut, "Whatever," was released in 1993 on Imago Records, which lost its distribution deal with BMG the next year. Her follow-up album, "I'm With Stupid," came out three years later on DGC/Geffen, which also re-released "Whatever."
When DGC/Geffen was absorbed by Interscope earlier this year during the PolyGram/Universal merger, Mann, who was well into recording her third solo album project, was dropped. But out of deep disappointment came hope, as the unsigned Mann, now living in Los Angeles, was the subject of a New York Times Magazine feature in July that detailed her clash with Interscope over the progress of "Bachelor No. 2."
Mann acquired the rights to the unreleased Geffen album and, deciding to go the do-it-yourself route, is releasing it on SuperEgo Records next month.
The 13-track "Bachelor No. 2" includes the song "Nothing Is Good Enough," an instrumental version of which appears on the soundtrack to "Magnolia." Three other soundtrack cuts -- "Deathly," "Driving Sideways," and "You Do" -- are also on the solo disc. Also included is "(The Fall Of The World's Own) Optimist," which Mann co-wrote with past collaborator Elvis Costello.
-- Jim Bessman, N.Y.