It’s a very different approach, to say the least. No drummer. No horns. Vocalist Erica Papillion-Posey reinvents some favorites for her debut album The Standard Reimagined, when jazz … (2016).
She’s accompanied by Chester Daigle II, piano; Jairus Daigle, violin; and Ken Walker, bass.
“Dindi” begins quietly, like the glassy smoothness of a still ocean. Papillion-Posey sings with an operatic quality. Interestingly, she pronounces the title as it’s spelled. Musically, this is a charming arrangement that’s sure to inspire many a romantic mood. The piano interlude enhances the moment, but it’s the soulful passion of the voice that makes this one of the finer interpretations.
Walker’s rhythmic step bass line introduces “Nature Boy. Papillion-Posey demonstrates her skill for subtle shifts in volume to express the emotional range of this piece. The violin weeps and wails during the middle break. Walker follows with a solo, supplemented by the piano’s counter-melody.
The release of The Standard Reimagined coincides with the launch of Papillion-Posey’s book, Musings from the Mind of a Mezzo, Poetry & Prose of passion, pain & plight. The latter is a compilation of works chronicling her experiences as a child of adoption, a woman, a performer and an artist. The songs for the album were carefully selected to represent the artist’s love letter to jazz. “A letter to a musical time that has always seduced me, a time when jazz was presented in its most evocative, sensual state and the aesthetic was one of understated elegance,” she says.