Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Live at the Village Gate
Genres: Jazz, Pop, R&B, Broadway & Vocalists
Classic live performance by one of the jazz world's great si
Mary Whipple | New England | 09/21/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Recorded in 1961, at the Village Gate, when Nina Simone, at age twenty-eight, was finding great success and popularity through her recordings on Colpix Records, this live performance beautifully recreates the mood and atmosphere of a Nina Simone concert. A performer with talents in many directions--and a classical background in piano, which she studied at Juilliard School of Music--Simone shows off her skills brilliantly in this CD, which never seems to repeat the same kind of music twice.
In the finger-popping "Just in Time," she begins almost in a monotone, singing the melody against a bass, but then picks up the tempo and introduces a sparkling piano treatment, her own arrangement. The ballad "He Was Too Good For Me," a slow lament of a lost love, is followed by "House of the Rising Sun," a folk song familiar to audiences worldwide now, but new at the time--sung as funky blues with a strong guitar and bass beat.
"Bye Bye Blackbird" is unique on the CD--an 8:12 minute jam session with no vocal. Simone on piano, and her guitarist, Al Shackman, provide a musical statement and then echo for two minutes, with drums, cymbals, and a more upbeat piano following. Filled with variations on the familiar theme, the track ends with a grand finale of classical jazz. "Brown Baby," a "freedom song" recorded in the days before Freedom Rides and the death of Martin Luther King, is a powerful assertion, which ends in a wail. "Zungo," which follows appropriately, is an African inspired number with drum accompaniment.
The highlight of the CD for me was "Children, Go Where I Send You," a revival song so full of energy that it will have you ready to leap through your speakers to "witness" along with Simone. Simone had complete artistic control at Colpix, and it shows here. The CD is beautifully paced and offers a great deal of variety, and Simone wisely keeps her accompaniment to a minimum. A terrific CD! Mary Whipple
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Nina Simone - Live at Montreux 1976
The Essential Nina Simone
Nina Simone's Finest Hour