Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
Listen to Samples
Relaxed, Jazzy Carmen
Peter | East of Los Angeles | 04/17/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This CD came as such a pleasant surprise when I bought it used from another seller on Amazon at a discounted price. I bought it because the list of songs appealed to me, not knowing what to expect. Well, I needn't worry. After the first few minutes my concerns were allayed when Carmen's wonderful intepretation started to unfold. The songs and performance here by Carmen are unbelievable. She's given top quality songs of the period accompanied by just rhythm and bass. The result is a relaxed, jazzy affair that gives Carmen room to improvise but not at the expense of the melody. This setting brings out Carmen at her best. She doesn't need strings or a full orchestra behind her, though I guess sometimes the record company throws those in for commercial reasons. Carmen almost steals some of the definitive performances of the famous songs, such as Nancy Wilson's "Guess Who I Saw Today", Tony Bennett's "Left My Heart in San Francisco" and Sinatra's "Fly Me to the Moon". Her ironic edge and sharp phrasing make these songs stand out. She has a knack for bringing out the essence of each song. It's a well spent 60 mins. Makes you feel as though you're sitting in a jazz club in one of New York's downtown Village spots with a spotlight on Carmen."
Samuel Chell | Kenosha,, WI United States | 02/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Having just experienced some disappointment at Carmen's vocal quality on one of her later albums ("Two for the Road" with George Shearing), I can whole-heartedly recommend this album. It's a splendid introduction to (not to mention value!), and representation of, one of the 5-6 best jazz singers of the last 50 years. Carmen here is in her prime, and is free of the studio orchestras that once restricted her creativity. The material, all familiar, is not uniformly first-rate, since it's rooted more in 1960s popular material than the "classic" American Songbook (Porter, Gershwin, Berlin, etc.). Not to worry. Even the most mundane material is transfigured by this creative communicator into "timeless moments." Her "Fly Me" matches Frank's, her "San Francisco" eclipses Tony's, her "Guess Who I Saw Today" even edges out Nancy's (listen especially for the subtle and sardonic inflection of the very last phrase)."
A pinch of Carmen may be too much
Samuel Chell | 11/20/1998
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Carmen may be the best kept secret in jazz. Everyone has heard of Billie, Ella, and Sarah but you have not graced the entire picture until you have buried yourself in Carmen. Carmen will scat you but I pefer it when she is talking about new, old, and lost loves. If you want to enhance your music library, buy this and just about anything else with this songstress, light the fireplace and a few candles, sit back, and enjoy. Carmen will take you on a legal buzz. Enjoy"