Romance is the theme with Monica Ramey and the Beegie Adair Trio (Adair Music Group, 2013). It’s a set of 14 ballads that defies the trend that seems to have flamed out. That trend, rock stars from the 1960s and ’70s recording albums of jazz standards, wore out The American Songbook – that collection of vintage jazz songs that have been covered by just about every singer who has done a jazz album.
Instead of an aging rock star, such as Rod Stewart, deciding he must get jazz out of his system, we have Ramey, a vocalist whose style is more suited to this music. A native of Francesville, Indiana and now based in Nashville, Tennessee, Ramey began her musical journey as the age of 3, and has studied at the Los Angeles County High School of the Arts. In 1995, she was selected to become a member of the Grammy National All-American High School Jazz Band and Choir.
Monica Ramey and the Beegie Adair Trio is the first recording featuring these two entities. The trio is Adair, piano; Roger Spencer, bass; and Chris Brown, drums. George Tidwell, trumpet and flugelhorn; and Denis Solee, saxophones and flute, appear on a few tracks.
Ramey and the trio go old school as they render such titles as “I Thought About You,” “Witchcraft,” “This Could Be the Start of Something Big” and “Whisper Not.”
No one thing stands out about these songs, but everything is done well and with the passion and cohesion one would expect from a small jazz ensemble. Every track is a pleasure, and some are sure to get fingers snapping and toes tapping. This is good, no-frills music.