Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Dionne Warwick takes a walk on the jazz side

Among the myriad voices that surfaced throughout the 1960s, Dionne Warwick remains one of the most distinctive and most enduring. The first decade of a career that now spans 50 years was defined by a steady stream of million-selling hits custom-crafted for her by Burt Bacharach and Hal David.

In 1990, Warwick made her first recorded foray into jazz, crafting an album of Cole Porter standards for Arista under the direction of producer Arif Mardin. But Clive Davis, then head of Arista, deemed the original sessions too jazzy and the tracks were re-recorded.

Now, 21 years later, Warwick is revisiting jazzland, this time with 13 Sammy Cahn tunes on Only Trust Your Heart.

Prior to the album's release, the legendary singer discusses her new album, her appreciation for jazz, her 50th showbiz anniversary, and her work with such jazz legends as Count Basie, Duke Ellington and Joe Williams with JazzTimes’ Christopher Loudon @
Dionne Warwick jazz walk

Friday, March 18, 2011

Visually impaired Kamilia 'Candy' Isaacs deliver an Ella Fitzgerald-esque set at Gospel Jazz event

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Jazz singer Myrna Hague takes 'First Cut' of reggae

Mel Cooke, Gleaner Writer

Myrna Hague's Melody Life album is an unusual project for the lady who is much more easily identified with jazz than reggae. Among the tracks on the 1972 Studio One album are Melody Life, First Cut Is The Deepest, Our Day Will Come, How Could I Live, What About Me, Time After Time and On a Clear Day.

Hague tells The Sunday Gleaner that the album was not only her introduction to some of the songs but also singing reggae. More on Melody Life

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Chamber Music Society tops Billboard Jazz Album Chart after Grammy awards

Chamber Music Society moves into #1 last week on the Billboard Jazz Album Charts following Esperanza Spalding bolt from the blue Best New Artist Grammy win.

Before the Grammy, Spalding’s third album, which is hailed among the US jazz community, peaked at #3 before put on a slide down the best-selling jazz album list. But, what a difference a Grammy makes in the life of a jazz bassist who only genre ficionados saw as the next big thing in jazz.

Still, Chamber Music Society was not nominated for a Grammy award and, including Spalding herself, almost none believed the little-known performer had a ghost of a chance to hold the statuette prize. No jazz artist as before won Grammy’s Best New Artist award.

Now a bemused music world not only is taking stock of jazz bassist and singer Esperanza Spalding but also is reaching out tangibly in making her the top-selling artist on Billboard over the fortnight and also placed the Heads Up CD at #34 – Billboard Top 200 (across genres), # 11 – Digital Album Chart (download), #16 – Tastemakers Album Chart (Independent Retailers), and moving up 42 positions to #5 on the based on listener's requests Jazz Week Radio Chart(see sidebar)

Twenty-eight weeks on chart, Chamber Music Society unseated the longstanding Crazy Love album (Michael Buble) at the top of the Billboard Jazz Album Chart. The Canadian’s latest album so far spent 73 on the US Chart.