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Various Artists: From A Mother's Heart (2008)

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Various Artists: From A Mother's Heart How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

It may not be Mother's Day, but the folks at Sound Visions Media Group have created a tribute to mothers that transcends the one day per year that celebrates them.

From Mother Earth, to a Brazilian tribute, to the Goddess of the Sea (in Portuguese), the organization's artists have contributed their time and creativity to produce an eleven track album. This project is only available as a download on the company's website. SVMG is also donating a percentage of the profits to the people that oversee MomsRising.org in hopes of bringing awareness to issues concerning motherhood and family back to center-stage in the United States.

Produced by Ellen Johnson, a fine West Coast jazz vocalist, the artists connected with this project have contributed a series of largely self-composed tunes. The only track that is likely to stir any recognition is Sheila Jordan's personalized version of Oscar Brown Jr. and Bobby Timmons' "Dat Dere," which has been altered to reflect a mother-daughter conversation. Johnson contributes the meaningful "With Every Kiss (for Frances)," accompanied by pianist Rick Helzer.

Other contributors include New York vocalist Barbara Sfraga, who delivers a "Song For My Mother," and veteran jazz vocalist Judy Silvano, performing one of her signature pieces, "Bouganvillea." Pianist/singer Mala Waldron (daughter of Mal Waldron) provides two strong compositions—"I Do Remember You" and the album's opener, "Ellie (for Mom)."

Reedman Don Braden makes an appearance on flute with his "Song for Mother," while pianist Anne Belmont contributes "You Know Me By Heart" and vocalist Peggy Duquesnel donates (who doesn't sing here) contributes "Children's Playground."

Perhaps the two most unusual tracks are Brasil Brazil vocalists Ana Gazzola and Sonia Santos' "Menina Dandera (Dandera Lady)" and guitarist John Stowell's "For My Chicoan Ancestors."

From a Mother's Heart pays homage to motherhood in a jazz-related manner.

Track Listing: Ellie(for Mom); Song For My Mother; Dat Dere; With Every Kiss (For Francis); Bougainvillea; Song for Mother(She is Made of Love); You Know My Heart; Children's Playgrounds; Menina Dandera (Dandera Lady); I Do Remember You; For My Chicoan Ancestors.

Personnel: Mala Waldron: vocals; Barbara Sfraga: vocals; Sheila Jordan: vocals; Ellen Johnson: vocals; Ana Gazzola: vocals; Sonia Santos: vocals; Don Braden: flute; John Stowell: guitar; Rick Helzer: piano; Christopher Dean Sullivan: bass; Anne Belmont: piano; other players unidentified.

Record Label: Sound Visions Media Group

Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


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