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Articles Home » 1994 Articles » Arena, Tina - 1994 Don't Ask
Arena, Tina - 1994 Don't Ask

ARTIST: Arena, Tina
ALBUM: Don't Ask
LABEL: Columbia
SERIAL: 477886 2
YEAR: 1994


LINEUP: Tina Arena - vocals, background vocals

Musicians: David Tyson - keyboard, Hammond organ, background vocals * Jai Winding - piano, keyboard * Claude Gaudette - piano * Tim Pierce - acoustic guitar, guitar * Bob Mann - guitar * Rick Price - acoustic guitar, background vocals * John Pierce - bass * Pat Mastelotto - percussion, drums * Carlos Vega - drums * Peter Asher, Matt Lang - percussion * Erika Duke-Kirkpatrick - cello * Peter Kent - violin * Raven Kane, Robert Parde, The Water Family, Marilyn Martin - background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Chains * 02 Heaven Help My Heart * 03 Sorrento Moon * 04 Wasn't It Good * 05 Message * 06 Love Is The Answer * 07 Greatest Gift * 08 Thats The Way A Woman Feels * 09 Be A Man * 10 Standing Up


If you were living in Australia during the 80's, chances are you would've seen a very young Tina Arena coming across your TV screens on various talent shows for kids. A child prodigy of sorts, the Melbourne based singer was blessed with a powerful voice, but by the time she hit her late teen years and ventured into a professional singing situation, Australian audiences found it difficult to take her seriously, given her career as a child singer. Looking for a new audience, Arena released her pop/rock debut 'Strong As Steel' during 1990. The album did moderately well, and featured the Diane Warren penned title track. Still unconvinced as to her profile, Arena polished up her performance ever further with the brilliant 'Don't Ask' CD from 1994. An album that would resonate throughout Australia for the next two years, and generate success nationwide. The album featured a mature set of songs, solid production from David Tyson (The Arrows, Jude Cole), and a stellar lineup of mostly Los Angeles based studio musicians.

The Songs
The first three songs on this album were huge hits. 'Chains' was an intense and at times dark affair, opening up brightly on the chorus. The following 'Heaven Help My Heart' was a gorgeous track with Rick Price accompanying on backing vocals. Even better was the acoustic/flamenco flavoured 'Sorrento Moon', with a subtle layer of synthesizer in the undercurrent. Beautiful stuff. The ballad 'Wasn't It Good' is a bit melodramatic, heart breaking even. 'Message' is played with a little bit of an urban backdrop, the chorus 'I've just got to get a message to you' sounds like the communication links are down. 'Love Is The Answer' is a fun time romp with a sing along quality added to it. 'Greatest Gift' is a slow burn ballad with a backing choir adding the gospel flavour. Keeping the pop/rock quotient intact is 'That's The Way A Woman Feels', a breezy number with a feelgood factor, for women at least! lol! 'Be A Man' and 'Standing Up' finish up the album, good tracks but the best ones had come before.

In Summary
'Don't Ask' became the best selling album in Australia during 1995 going 10x Platinum and doing very well else around the world. It was ARIA's number one album of the year back home in Australia. There was an international version of the album which included an extra track: 'Show Me Heaven', which was co-written by Lone Justice's Maria McKee. Tina would go on to release 1997's 'In Deep' produced by Foreigner's Mick Jones. Since then she has released a handful of albums both in English and in foreign language. These days Tina lives in France but spends a lot of time in England and in Australia.

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#1 | Explorer on August 22 2015 14:43:34
Picked up the 'In Deep ' album for literally pennies earlier today, along with many other bargains. Early indications are that it's a solid AOR/Pop album.
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