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Leslie Lewis: Midnight Sun (2012)

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Leslie Lewis: Midnight Sun Track review of "The Man I Love"

How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Jazz singing does not so much require an obedient voice as a directed but free-spirited one. There are few vocalists who can pull off the elastic fireworks of a Betty Carter
Betty Carter
Betty Carter
1930 - 1998
vocalist
, Lisa Sokolov
Lisa Sokolov
Lisa Sokolov
b.1954
vocalist
or Tierney Sutton
Tierney Sutton
Tierney Sutton
b.1963
vocalist
and fewer still who should even try. East Coast-West Coast vocalist Leslie Lewis has a beautifully perfect alto voice for singing jazz. By tone alone, she can claim a well deserved corner of the jazz vocal map for herself, much in the same way Kate McGarry
Kate McGarry
Kate McGarry

vocalist
has done. There is a place for both kinds of singing. Lewis provides an effective vehicle for melody, unadorned by improvisation but fully expanded through phrasing.

Lewis spins out a potent and dense reading of the Gershwin brothers' "The Man I Love" on her Surf Cove recording, Midnight Sun. Fronting an empathetic tenor quartet, Lewis belts the old show tune with a gospel fervor, giving it enough momentum to break out of a traditional orbit and into a purely expressive one. Saxophonist Chuck Manning
Chuck Manning
b.1958
sax, tenor
plays lyric foil to Lewis' deeply hued delivery, the duo carefully comforted by pianist Gerard Hagan's sensitive trio support.

Personnel: Leslie Lewis: vocals; Gerard Hagan: piano; Domenic Genova: bass; Jerry Kalaf: drums; Chuck Manning: tenor saxophone.

Record Label: Self Produced


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