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Celebrated Russian TV Personality Oleg Frish Debuts "Great American Songbook"

SOURCE: Published:
RECORDED WITH PATRICK WILLIAMS BIG BAND

Recorded at Legendary Capitol Records Studios in Hollywood, “Bring Me Sunshine" Spotlights Soviet Entertainer's Passion for American Classics

Los Angeles, CA—Oleg Frish is probably one of the most famous men in America that you've never heard of. Of the five million Russians living in the United States, Frish is one of the best known personalities and is often described as the Merv Griffin of Russian-American entertainment—a versatile and well regarded TV and radio host and a singer, too—in multiple languages. His debut CD in the United States, “Bring Me Sunshine," will debut August 9th.

A passionate and rabid fan of American music and the Great American songbook in particular, Oleg's wildly successful Russian-American Television Show, “Time Out," was broadcast weekly on the Russian-American Television Network NTV across the U.S. and featured his celebrated interviews with many American music and celebrity icons including the late James Brown, Donna Summer, Whoopi Goldberg, Paul Anka, Neil Sedaka, Nancy Wilson, B.B. King, Connie Francis and many others. At the height of its popularity, the “Time Out" program reached millions of people in 19 countries across the globe and ranked as the top Russian-language entertainment show, the “Entertainment Tonight" of Russian TV.

Says legendary singer and Vegas icon Keely Smith, “Oleg knows and loves American music."

In 2010 Oleg took some time off from his TV duties to record his ode to the art of timeless music, the English-language CD project, “Bring Me Sunshine," debuting August 9th. In the same studios used by Frank Sinatra and Nelson Riddle, Frish teamed with Patrick Williams, who was also the arranger-conductor for both of Sinatra's “Duets" albums, the singer's final recordings Featuring vocals by himself and the music of the A-list Hollywood musicians who form the Patrick Williams Big Band, “Bring Me Sunshine" was recorded at the legendary Capitol Records Studios in Hollywood California. 20—time Grammy Award winner Al Schmitt, who has engineered or produced records for Frank Sinatra, Diana Krall, Jefferson Airplane, Eddie Fisher, Glenn Yarborough, Jackson Browne and Neil Young and engineered Ray Charles' Genius Loves Company, which won eight Grammy® Awards in 2004, is the engineer on the lushly-orchestrated CD.

The final product, “Bring Me Sunshine," features 15 tracks from some of the 20th century's top songwriters, including Johnny Mercer ("Goody Goody"), Jimmy McHugh ("A Lovely Way To Spend An Evening"), Victor Young ("Around The World"), Charles Strouse ("A Lot of Livin' To Do"), and Sammy Cahn and Jules Styne ("I've Heard This Song Before").

Born in the USSR, Frish hails from a musical family—his mother is a pianist and his father was longtime head of the children's choir and an important member of the artistic community. Oleg always knew that show business was where he wanted to be and so he embarked on a performing career after graduating from the Kalinin State University.

Among his first jobs 30 years ago was that of a “singing psychic." As part of his act, he would guess what songs people in the audience were thinking about and then sing them. His powerful “mind reading" skills lead to national recognition and certification by one of the Soviet Union's top cultural institutions; it also lead to his induction into the prestigious World Magicians Brotherhood.

With so much recognition coming his way, Oleg moved to Moscow, where he became the editor of a prominent performing arts magazine covering the fields of music, variety and circuses. While in Moscow, Frish also obtained a degree in the history of variety and circus arts, and developed an interest in promoting Russian “stars of the past." Frish then toured the country and beyond, lecturing on show biz history to students and the general public and gained a reputation as an expert in this area of study.

Following periodic trips to other countries, including the U.S., Frish decided to move to America and particularly the New York City area, where a large immigrant population gave birth to a small but growing Russian-language publishing, entertainment and broadcast industry. Once there he called on old friends from Moscow to help accelerate his career in the U.S., and was soon writing articles and hosting a regularly scheduled program on WMNB, where he interviewed such Russian notables as Tatiana Samoilova and Elena Kamburova for a show titled “Walking The Streets of Moscow."

The time ultimately arrived when a Russian-language TV station was ready for broadcast in America—about the same time as Oleg's appetite for and knowledge of American pop music of the 50's and 60's was growing. NTV America was established in New York and along with it a flagship entertainment magazine show hosted by Frish. “Time Out" became a staple of the Russian network and featured Frish hosting a who's who of American show business luminaries.

“This new CD was really the next logical step in my career," says Frish. “I was thrilled and excited to make this record, and each song has a special meaning in my life."


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