Gretchen Parlato: In A Dream (2010)

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Track review of "Azure"

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Gretchen Parlato: In A Dream
Vocalist Gretchen Parlato is part Bobby McFerrin
Bobby McFerrin
Bobby McFerrin
b.1950
vocalist
, part Theo Bleckmann
Theo Bleckmann
Theo Bleckmann

vocalist
, and David Binney
David Binney
David Binney
b.1961
saxophone
. All men, yes. Parlato's voice is light as an apparition, ethereal and implied. She is fond of vocal gymnastics as is McFerrin. She shares a sense of humor in art with Bleckmann and a musical adventurousness with Binney. In A Dream is the recording Chet Baker
Chet Baker
Chet Baker
1929 - 1988
trumpet
would have made, had he been a woman. Both vocalists share an opaqueness in an otherwise transparent instrument.

Duke Ellington
Duke Ellington
Duke Ellington
1899 - 1974
piano
's "Azure" is a suitable vehicle for Parlato. It is one of Ellington's lighter pieces, one well-crafted for delicate voices like Parlato's. She delivers the lyrics in a breathy whir over Lionel Loueke
Lionel Loueke
Lionel Loueke
b.1973
guitar
's acoustic guitar. The neighborhood is vaguely Latin. Derrick Hodge
Derrick Hodge
Derrick Hodge
b.1979
bass
's brief bass solo adds an organically integrated element to the piece, recalling the instrumentation favored by singer Cassandra Wilson
Cassandra Wilson
Cassandra Wilson
b.1955
vocalist
. Much has been made of Gretchen Parlato, and for good reason.

Personnel: Gretchen Parlato: voice, percussion; Lionel Loueke: acoustic guitar, voice; Aaron Parks: piano, Fender Rhodes, synthesizer, glockenspiel; Derrick Hodge: acoustic bass, electric bass; Kendrick Scott: drums.

Record Label: ObliqSound


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