Kenny Rankin: A Song for You (2002)
And with his tender, flexible, expressive and very personal voice he is fortunate to have, why shouldn't he exercise as much artistic latitude and discretion as the music will allow? His "Where Do You Start?" is eons away from Shirley Horn's but just as valid. And since he sings the cream of the compositional crop, opportunities for discretion and latitude abound. Listen to his spacing and the way he manipulates (using the word nicely) "When the Sun Comes Out". Similarly on "Then I'll Be Tired of You" as his voices wends in and out of the clean strummed, you can hear every note guitar strumming of guest guitarist Russell Malone.
Also, the orchestrations of Alan Broadbent and John Beasley are perfectly attuned to support Rankin's special way of doing the music. The singer also relies heavily on the guitar to provide his instrumental padding and harmonies. Spinozza does most of the work here. But Rankin reminds us he was more than a credible guitarist by accompanying himself on "A Song for You". Chris Potter's tenor adds quite a bit to the interpretation of "When the Sun Come Outs". But for the most, horns don't have a big role in this session.
Over his career, Rankin has been compared to this singer and to that one. But he needs no validation through comparison. His voice and his technique are sufficient evidence of his considerable talent. Recommended.
Track Listing: When the Sun Comes Out%; Where Do You Start^; `Round Midnight; She Was Too Good to Me*; Spanish Harlem^; Then I'll Be Tired of You^; The Way You Look Tonight; I've Just Seen a Face; Love Walked In%; A Song for You
Personnel: Kenny Rankin/vocals/guitar*; David Spinozza - Acoustic and Electric Guitars; Christian McBride - Bass; Lewis Nash - Drums; John Beasley - Synthesizer/Orchestrations; Roy Hargrove# - Trumpet; Chris Potter - Tenor Sax%; Russell Malone^ - Guitar
Record Label: Verve Music Group