Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Vocal CD of the Month - "Sandy Patton & Thomas Dürst: Painting Jazz Vol. II"

Vocal CD of the Month
Sandy Patton & Thomas Dürst: "Painting Jazz Vol. II" (Unit) 2012

Rating: ***** (musical performance & sonic quality)

Produced by Sandy Patton & Thomas Dürst
Executive Producer: Peter Bürli (DRS 2)
Recorded May 15 & 16, 2011 @ Hardstudios, Switzerland
Engineered (recording, mixing & mastering) by Ron Kurz
Photos: Doris Kuert (Fotozone)
Graphic Design: Stefanie Nguyen

Certainly the best North American jazz singer currently based in Europe. And arguably the best female jazz singer in the world, in the tradition of Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Betty Carter and other performers forged in the bebop area of phenomenal scat-singing skills. A tradition that Sandy Patton updates throughout this brilliant album, the second in a duo setting with Switzerland's top jazz bassist, Thomas Dürst, who also happens to be a member of trumpeter Peter Schärli's group.

She puts her personal stamp, gorgeous warm voice and astonishing phrasing in service of such incredible tunes like Rahsaan Roland Kirk's "Serenade To A Cuckoo" (she added lyrics to a tune I love since my childhood, when I heard Kirk's live version on the "Kirkatron" LP partly recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival for Warner), Hank Mobley's "No Room For Squares," and even Erik Satie's "Gymnopedie No.1." There are also two medleys -- James Moody/Eddie Jefferson's "Moody's Mood" connected with the song that inspired it, Jimmy McHugh's "I'm in the Mood For Love," and Hugo Friedhofer's "Boy on a Dolphin" attached to Herbie Hancock's "Dolphin Dance" --, a surprising take on Astor Piazzolla's nuevo-tango classic "Libertango," and 5 originals by Patton and 3 by Dürst. I'll consider a miracle if a better vocal jazz album comes out in 2012.

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