Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
In a Very Unusual Way
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
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Passionate and intense, but not Akers in peak form.
Mary Whipple | New England | 05/27/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Recorded in 1987, this is Karen Akers's second album-and it would be considered an outstanding album if Akers had not recorded several other much better ones after this one. With her strong alto and Piaf-type vibrato and timbre, she sings songs of heartbreak, loss, and disillusionment, giving impassioned interpretations to songs by James Taylor ("Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight"), George and Ira Gershwin ("How Long Has This Been Going On"), Stephen Sondheim ("Not a Day Goes By), and Peter Allen ("I've Been Taught by Experts), among others. Accompanied on piano/keyboard (Michael Abene), electric bass (Tom Barney), and percussion (Akira Tana and James Saporito), Akers keeps her instrumental arrangements simple, subordinating them to her voice.
Akers has a huge voice, and she sings with passionate intensity, but in these songs, with the exception of one song, she always seems to be holding back, holding in her immense power. In "I've Been Taught by Experts," however, she wails, letting her big voice soar, and powering through the lyrics. "Not a Day Goes By," often used as a star turn by other singers, is sung ironically by Akers here, her voice remaining under total control.
Sophisticated and reserved, Akers sings like the actress she is, but these songs are all of similar mood, and they demand less, vocally, than she shows on other albums. Akers recorded this when her acting career was at its peak--she had just filmed Heartburn with Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep (with whom she held own as the femme fatale), had been on Broadway in Tommy Tune's Grand Hotel, for which she had been nominated for a Tony, and had been in several TV shows, and her acting ability is obvious here as she emotes her way through these impassioned songs. A fine album, though not as interesting as some of her others, this is Akers at the beginning of her fantastic cabaret career. Mary Whipple
KAREN AKERS - "Just A Housewife or a Cabret singer?"
Mary Whipple | 06/03/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I own four other Karen Akers c.d.'s but this one took a while for it to grow on me. I now absolutely adore this gem. At first, when I heard 'I Now Him So Well' it sounded like her vocal was reverberating - especially when she sings "wasn't it good, he could be mine". Regardless, she can interpret songs with such grace and elegance as well with conviction. She is truly a wondrful alto with a close heart for Edith Piaf. Karen Akers is truly underated but she continues to shine us with her spectacular voice."