Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Flirting With Twilight
Genres: Jazz, Pop
His four Grammy-nominated Blue Note albums, as well as his live shows, have always contained deeply tuneful, emotive, and accessible numbers. These demonstrate that the unbeatable combination of captivating music and telli... more »
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His four Grammy-nominated Blue Note albums, as well as his live shows, have always contained deeply tuneful, emotive, and accessible numbers. These demonstrate that the unbeatable combination of captivating music and telling words proves welcome grist for Elling's capacious mill. Flirting with Twilight simply expands that view. Chicago-born-and-based Kurt, his musical partner, pianist Laurence Hobgood, and a stellar supporting cast explore the possibilities provided by 12 provocative selections. Here, the pace is slow to moderate, the moods range from poignant to delighted and the melody, the words and the meaning within the two make up the message. Kurt Elling: Voice
Clay Jenkins: Trumpet
Jeff Clayton: Alto saxophone
Bob Sheppard: Tenor and soprano saxophones
Laurence Hobgood: Piano
Marc Johnson: Bass
Peter Erskine: Drums
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Formidable talent on the verge
Samuel Chell | Kenosha,, WI United States | 03/14/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"No musician is more vulnerable to criticism than the one whose instrument is the human voice, and no vocalist invites the public's slings and arrows more readily than the one who attempts to sing jazz. In most pop music, the expectations are low: the only criterion is an album that can be danced to or sung along with. In jazz, on the other hand, the vocal performer must convince a tiny, select audience of "know it all's" that he can hold his own with the very best instrumentalists, with whom he is always being compared.Kurt Elling has all of the requisites for a long and memorable career: courage and determination, passion for the music along with superb musicianship and a marvelous voice. His baritone sound is crisp and clear, his falsetto equally so, and with no distracting "break" from the lower register. His intonation is inerrant, his diction pure, his breath reserves ample ("More Than You Know," with its haunting verse and extended phrases, is a tune begging for his attention).But listening to this album, like his previous releases, is a matter of experiencing many exquisite musical and melodic moments more than the song as a whole. "Moonlight Serenade" might be taken as a touchstone to his approach. His setting lyrics to and then singing the bass solo previously recorded by Charlie Haden is a nice tribute--not simply to Haden but to Elling's taste and imagination. But finally the whole seems no more than the sum of its parts. The song itself has not taken on new life.I wish Elling would make an album in which he forgot about comparing himself to other performers as well as about the listeners who insist on making such comparisons. It's a losing battle, and he no longer has anything to prove anyway. Sinatra, perhaps more than anyone, showed what can be accomplished by, first, establishing a competent and confident musical persona and, second, applying all of that artistry and musical talent to one objective only: the interpretation of the song.The year 2002 is the centennial of the birth of arguably the greatest melodic composer of them all and, when paired with his first lyricist, one-half of the team that produced America's best poetry. How refreshing it would be to commemorate the occasion with "Kurt Elling Sings Rodgers and Hart.""
Less variety and less original lyrics. But excellent
Academic Operative Wannabe | 10/09/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I think that the summary of this release is simple. By far the most interesting song to listen to is the only one that Elling wrote the lyrics to (Orange Blossoms in Summertime). It seems the most characteristic of Elling's work up-till-now. All the others are excellently performed, both Elling and the instrumentals. But simply not the same energy and poetry.That aside, this is probably the best collection of jazz ballads that I've ever heard. But not exactly what I want when I rush out to get the latest release by Kurt Elling or when I drive up to the Green Mill."
concertina78 | Illinois | 10/11/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Although this album is a bit of a departure from what Kurt Elling usually does, it is still a fine showcase of his talents and his incredible musicianship. There have been many recordings that have come out recently of many of the songs that Kurt sings here, such as "Blame it on My Youth", "I'm Through with Love", and "Detour Ahead". Truthfully, at first I was a bit hestitant to hear the same old songs yet again. But not surprisingly, he adds his own special and unique touch to each of these songs, making them truly his own and they stand out above the other versions.
The band that accompanies him is tight, especially on "Easy Livin", and Laurence Hobgood is wonderful as always.
The hidden song at the end of the last track is called "je tire la reverence", which was a famous Marlene Dietrich tune. And accompanied by only Marc Johnson, it is truly stunning and it is one of many shining highlights to a fantastic album."