JUDY BARNETT’S “TOO DARN HOT”-MAKES TALKIN’ BROADWAY’S VOCAL…TOP TEN CD LIST
MUSIC: CDS RELEASES
Cole Porter's Too Darn Hot is the first song on the CD. In this song, Barnett displayed a captivating innovation characterized by a joyful tempo, a vivacious mood of musical virtuosity...a splendid splash of musical lights and sensual cadence bursted out of the magnificent brass section, the elegance of Ted Kooshian on the piano like drops of diamonds over the face of a lake splashing unrestrained rings of beauty, add to this musical tableau, the intimate and clever touch of Tom Hubbard on the bass... and Barnett's voice, a sound out of this world; it is intelligent, bubbly and powerful without losing lyricism, depth and substance. This singer has perfected her craft. Barnett loves to be referred to as a Jazz singer. But in this CD, Barnett transcends the dogmatic frontier of traditional Jazz. She is way beyond the "ordinary Jazz". She appears as a world class singer radiating elegance, panache and a perfect command of the lyrics and fabric of music. In this context, Barnett shines as a glowing interpreter of world music, rather than a rigidly defined Jazz singer. Few have accomplished this.
Joe Ascione's drums are powerful and harmoniously blend with the captivating rhythm of the total ambiance. The orchestration of the trumpet, flugelhorn, tenor sax, trombone and alto sax is well crafted and embodies a universe of musical explosion and implosion. A rich, very rich arrangement at the highest level and a world-class performance by Bud Burridge, Jerry Weldon, Aaron Heick, Charles Pillow and Randy Andos. And here and there, Barnett's superb voice enrobes the musical wealth of the CD with sensual lyricism, vitality and stylish finesse. This was evidenced in two songs "My Cherie Amour" and "April in Paris." Usually, we listen to music because we need to create an ambiance for our feelings, our state of mind or perhaps, just perhaps to relax amid turbulent sensations and emotions. Judy Barnett's "Too Darn Hot" goes 2 miles beyond those emotional needs. This CD sets the mood for us before probing our inner feelings. It generates and transmutes moods to meet and or to create the aura and ambiance of the perfect setting of mind, soul and body. You could feel this enchanting and magic ambiance in the explosive "Summer in the City" and "Bummer Summer" written by Kooshian and Barnett herself. Go back to "It Might As Well Be Spring/It's Delovely" and get yourself lost in a rainbow of elegant drums brushes and nostalgic trombone outcries. Simply fabulous. The arrangements were conceived by Ms. Barnett with additional arrangement by the virtuoso Bud Burridge who did a magnificent job. Mr. Burridge granted each instrument the space and time to echo individual musical virtuosity and a rich sequence of sounds rarely heard nowadays. Give him 5 star rating!
"That Sunday That Summer" is one of the finest recordings in a decade. In that tune, The violins radiate unmatched musical beauty, an evocative instrumental splendor only witnessed in Mantovanni's arrangements and orchestration. Few jazz singers used this unorthodox blend of classic flair and musical free form in their Jazz repertoire, to name two: Nat King Cole and Judy Barnett. I keep thinking about Barnett's Voice; it blends with all the moods and genres of the CDs tunes, ranging from a contemplative/relaxing set of mind to a beautifully and sinfully explosive musical ambiance. To sense this unusual blend, listen to "Night and Day"; Frank Vignola's guitar solo reflects this most unique creativity! In "Walk Between The Raindrops", the sax solo is majestic, powerful, yet it does not violate the sensibility and finesse of the musical cadence. Another knockout is "Indian Summer/Summer Place"; it served as a plateau for the fabulous musical arrangements, the romantically rich whispers of the violins and the silky, intelligent and soul penetrating voice of Ms. Barnett. And now pack your baggage and head toward Rio...just listen to "The Coffee Song"; Yes Contessa, you are in Brazil now...Marshal Rosenberg's uplifting and magnificent percussions capture the Brazilian landscape, and that fabulous brass section bursts again stronger than the sun of the Samba and the Carnival de Rio! And to crown this magnificent CD, "Summer Wind" comes in the right place and right moment. On violin, Belinda Whitney, Martin Agee and Antoine Sillverman and on cello, Anik Ouilianine added a universe of virtuosity and enchanting beauty....In this particular song, and all of a sudden, Barnett's voice becomes the canvas for sensual beauty, earthy whispers of a "sweet femme fatale" and a happy Jazz singer. This woman is a pure magic! A phenomenon! Nobody, absolutely nobody can sing like Judy Barnett. Buy this CD. It is a treasure, a triumph. Rating: 5 stars. Judy Barnett is listed in the WORLD WHO’S WHO IN JAZZ, CABARET, MUSIC AND ENTERTAINMENT, Volume IV “ SHOWBIZ, PIONEERS< BEST SINGERS, MUSICIANS AND ENTERTAINERS FROM 1606 TO THE PRESENT”, published by the Federation of American Musicians, Singers and Performing Artists (FAMSPA)-Maximillien de Lafayette
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