Nancy Kelly: Born To Swing (2006)
The songs are all serviceable and Kelly does breathe some life into such familiar jazz vehicles as "I've Got The World On A String," "Come Rain Or Come Shine" and "Like Someone in Love." After providing several soulful moments on the opening, Houston Person steps out "for a cup of coffee" and only reappears on the midway mark of the album. Thank goodness, for the very solid playing of pianist Dino Losito, another regular from New York's Southern Tier, who provides some two-fisted support for Kelly, as well as efforts by Miner and Taylor. When Person returns on "Come Rain Or Come Shine," the listener can settle back into a full comfort mode.
Coincidentally, Nancy Kelly opened for a jazz act in suburban Long Island that I had planned to attend and I did get a bonus opportunity to hear and meet the singer under working conditions. Her backing trio of Sarah Jane Cion (piano), Jerry Bruno (bass) and Joe Cocuzzo (drums) cooked, and Kelly showed her skills at both scatting and singing, taking a lot more freedom with the melodies. In addition, Kelly shared showed great ease with her musicians and exuded a hipness with both the audience and her trio.
Track Listing: I've Got The World On A String; Like Someone In Love; You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To; More Than You Know; Falling In Love With Love; Let Me Off Uptown; Didn't We; Come Rain Or Come Shine; I'll Be Seeing You; Watch What Happens; New York State of Mind; Let's Talk Business.
Personnel: Nancy Kelly: vocals: Houston Person: tenor saxophone; Dino Losito: piano, Fender Rhodes; Neal Miner: bass; Mark Taylor: drums.
Record Label: Amherst Records