NEW YORK, March 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Thanks to American Idol, America's
top- rated network television show, the music of Columbia recording artist
Jeff Buckley has achieved a sudden and unprecedented level of popularity
across the USA.
(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20060130/LEGACYLOGO )
This week, Jeff's 1994 recording "Hallelujah" hit the #1 spot on
iTunes' singles chart. It's the first U.S. Number One song on any chart for
the revered singer/songwriter, who died May 29, 1997 at age 30.
Jeff released Grace, his first full-length Columbia album, in August
1994. One of its most popular tracks was (and still is) his beautiful and
deeply spiritual rendition of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah," first recorded
by its composer on Cohen's 1984 Columbia album Various Positions. Many
critics and listeners consider Jeff Buckley's Grace version to be the
definitive recorded interpretation of the song. "Hallelujah" was included
on Rolling Stone's 2004 list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time" and
hailed by Q Magazine in 2007 as "the most perfect song ever."
On Tuesday, March 4, Jason Castro, a 20-year-old aspiring singer from
Rockwall, Texas, performed "Hallelujah" on American Idol-now in its seventh
season on the Fox network and still the Number One-rated television show in
the nation. Although "Hallelujah" has been performed by artists ranging
from k.d. lang to Bon Jovi, American Idol judges Randy Jackson and Simon
Cowell both stated that Jeff Buckley's version was their personal favorite.
Jason Castro's rendition of the song -- combined with the judges'
favorable comments -- propelled droves of viewers to the iTunes Store to
download the original version from Grace, which promptly shot to No. 4 on
iTunes singles chart and then over the following weekend continued to
climb, finally reaching the coveted Number One position. To date, Legacy
Recordings has sold over 565,773 digital downloads of Jeff Buckley's
In terrestrial form, "Hallelujah" appears on Jeff Buckley's GRACE:
LEGACY EDITION, a special three-disc set issued by Legacy Recordings in
August 2004 to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the album's original
"It's a thrill to see Jeff's work being embraced in his own country at
this level," says Mary Guibert, the artist's mother and the chief executor
of his estate. "Even though it has been more than a decade since his
departure, it was very moving to hear the American Idol judges speak so
highly of Jeff. A mother can't help but love that!"
SOURCE Legacy Recordings