SARAH JAMES VOCALS
JOHN DI MARTINO PIANO
DARRYL HALL BASS
TIM HORNER DRUMS
JAY COLLINS TENOR SAXOPHONE
Varied moods, but consistantly high quality performances permeate this recording. Certainly, the title describes the vast majority of these selections. Tose few selections that don't require
the deep introspection of most of the CD provide a contrast that contributes to the success of the recording.
Sarah James demonstrates on each selection that she is a superior vocalist, and that she also has superior instincts in the ability to make the listener feel that he/she is a part of the entire experience. The accompaniment is as appropriate on the six selections with a trio (and quartet) as well as on the six selections with onlyu di Martino.
The intimacy of the duets makes it almost seem as if I am intruding on a very private conversation. The CD is programmed almost in the opposite way of so many recordings in that excitment increses as the record progresses. This one gets more introspective, so that by the time the last selection,"Be Still With Me is reached, the level of introspection is at an extreme level.
A real attempt to find songs that have not been over used has yielded a program that includes rarities, some identified with few others. In each case however, no comparison can be drawn as James' voice remains unique on evch selection. Lucy Reed sang "lazy Afternoon", Billie Holiday sang "For Heaven's Sake" Bill Evans "sang" "My Foolish Heart" many have sang "Nice Work...", "The Very Thought of You" and "Prelude To A Kiss", but these versions are unique.
The originals, "Sing Of Love", "Twilight Blues" and "Be Still With Me" will be owned by James. "You Can leave Your Hat On" a Randy Newman song, and "Bird On A Wire" by Leonard Cohen are uniquely quirky and this adds to the originality of this recording.
To me, the outstanding track is Bob Dorough's "Nothing Like You", which takes on a genuine harmonic strength on this recording, unlike the original, which had a vague harmonic performance, which added to to that recording, as the specificness of the harmonies add to this one. I recommend this recording. Listeners can listen to it complete, or choose selections to suit their own tempo, mood and level of introspection for that specific moment.