How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
"How's it going? Let's talk some. That's the kind of atmosphere Freddy Cole sings. He's casual, chatty and comforting, like a good old friend. A bit more gravel in his voice these days only adds to the warmth of his style. In a choice set of selections from the Great American Songbook there are some particular standouts. "Music Maestro Please serves as a last-call-for-alcohol moment perfectly suited to Cole's particular swinging ever so gentle buddy-to-buddy style. When he drifts into a conversational coda to the song with "I'm trying to make it on home, bring me a double, you can feel the weight of those late hour blues.
A nostalgic old beauty like "Once in a While is catnip for Cole. With a beautiful lead-in by Bill Charlap at the piano, who's superb as usual, it's a masterful demonstration of using a modest vocal range to maximum effect. And with "You Leave Me Breathless Cole does just that, bringing it home ever so subtly. He's solid, swinging and totally engaging. Here and throughout the blending of Cole's distinctive voice with Charlap's ace trio evolve into one neatly satisfying unity.
Track Listing: I'll Never Be the Same; My Ideal; Medley: Don't Take Your Love From Me/I Never Had a Chance; Music; Maestro Please!; If I Love Again; Why Did I Choose You?; Once In a While; You Leave Me Breathless; There Are Such Things; You Could Hear a Pin Drop; How Do You Say Auf Wiedersehn?.
Personnel: Freddy Cole: vocals; Bill Charlap: piano; Peter Washington: bass; Kenny Washington: drums.