Nora McCarthy/Jorge Sylvester: A Small Dream in Red (2005)
The recording captures this formidable duo live at a 2003 concert at Cleveland State University. The five cuts include a beautiful medley of "Afro Blue/My Romance," Miles Davis' "All Blues," Ysaye Maria Barnwell's "Wanting Memories," and original compositions by both McCarthy and Sylvester. The lineup may be minimalist, but the music certainly isn't; both McCarthy and Sylvester have extensive palettes and their nuances of color and conception are a pleasure to behold. McCarthy's voice stretches and soars and whether she's singing straight-ahead, scatting, or simply vocalizing, her voice rings true and clear. Sylvester has a gorgeous tone and a sure touch, plus a wonderful ability to weave in and out of melodies.
It's delightful to hear music that plays so freely with the known and the unknown elements of jazz. McCarthy and Sylvester show the utmost respect for the formal elements of music while also possessing the daring to dissolve borders, making A Small Dream in Red an aural adventure of the highest order.
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Track Listing: Afro Blue/My Romance; Wanting Memories; All Blues; Miles Mind; Akara Moi Moi.
Personnel: Nora McCarthy: vocals; Jorge Sylvester: alto saxophone.
Record Label: Sundown Jazz
Style: Modern Jazz