The Jazz Room - Vocal Jazz
October 2004 the label Groove United launched the collection "Jazz
Room" a five-CD series (Latin Jazz, Classic Jazz, Vocal Jazz,
Jazz Sampler, Smooth Jazz). I recently reviewed the album Smooth
Jazz. Information about the label and their artists can be read
there. The album "Vocal Jazz" presents the vocalists Wade
O. Brown, Delihla, Brandy
Callahan, Lisa Miranda and Michelle Brown.
These singers are performing different
styles taken from the Golden Age of Jazz through to the "New Millennium". This variety makes the album interesting.
The best way to realize the quality
of a singer is to listen to a classic tune. This
Masquerade is featuring Wade O. Brown. The writer and composer
of "This Masquerade" is Leon Russell, who's unusual
biography can be read here.
Very popular was this song when George Benson released a cover on his legendary
album "Breezin'". He is still playing this song on
his tours. Wade O. Brown's version hasn't to hide behind this giant of
pop history. I cannot get the imagination of Luther Vandross out of my
mind, when I hear his voice.
Me Baby is a romantic love song in a slow tempo mood.
Mike Sereny lets the song glow with his piano accompany.
Classic jazz of the 40's is performed
by Brandy Callahan on Teach Me Tonight.
"There are many who have helped shape my character, but my vocal
abilities come from God," comments Brandy. And this young woman
can really scat.
When Sunny Gets
Blue was composed by Marvin Fisher and written by Jack Segal.
This popular duo has made the music for Barbara
Streisand, Sinead O'Conner, Frank Sinatra, Cher, Al Jarreau,
Nat King Cole, Steve Miller, Johnny Mathis and Tony
Bennett. Lisa Miranda performs this song in a classic way with a
The song Nature
Boy and his
composer Eden Ahbez originally performed by Nat King Cole in 1948 has
a special story.
The song tells a fantasy of a "strange enchanted boy"
"who wandered very far" only to learn that "the
greatest gift" "was just to love and be loved in return. It
could be the life story of Eden Ahbez. Anyway this song was a
phenomenal hit in the 40's and soon got a classic. Delihla's
interpretation is near the original.
Next song is an
impressing revival of George and Ira Gershwin's Embraceable
You presented by
Brandy Callahan. Brandy's public appearance in the Canadian idol show
is only her first step to popularity. All critics confirm: "This
lady can sing!"
This album doesn't
contain only covers. Dave Sereny has composed and performed Oh
Awesome Singer of this tune is Delihla. The tune homogeneously fits in
Jazz fans will also
like You Don't
Know What Love Is.
This song was covered by innumerous artists like Chet Baker, Tony
Burnett, Etta James, John Abercombie and more. The song was originally
composed by Gene DePaul for the film "Keep 'Em Flying"
(1941). The lyrics were written by Don Raye. Wade O. Brown's rendition
is a gorgeous alternative.
The classic jazz song
par excellence is George Gershwin's
Brandy Callahan's modern interpretation will find attentive listeners.
Convince yourself of
Dave Sereny's compositional and musician skills by listening to
Crazy He Calls Me
was created by Carl Sigman and Bob Russell. This song is so popular
that it was covered by hundreds of Pop and Jazz greats from Nat King
Cole to Janis Joplin. Michelle Brown is the singer of this version and
she does a good job.
If you are a lover of
vocal jazz classics you should select this album for your personal
consideration. This album is a representative survey of vocal jazz
history performed by excellent singers.