Rickie Lee Jones & Tom Waits: Salute Ella & Louis (2008)
Though it has been decades since the two artists were involved, they agreed to an amicable reunion for an improbable tribute to Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong. The singers will turn a few heads with their laudable, engaging duets of the eleven standards recorded in 1956 by Fitzgerald and Armstrong for Verve. "Can't We Be Friends" really swings, while "They Can't Take That Away" is humorous, particularly when Waits ad libs, "They ain't gonna send me back there, no!" One shortcoming is Chris Botti's rather unconvincing attempt to simulate Satchmo's trumpet style. While this CD will never replace the original Ella & Louis, it is a heartfelt salute to two giants of jazz and popular music. The excellent rhythm section includes the French/Vietnamese pianist Nam DePlum, Haitian bassist Bill S. Tuppé and British drummer Justin Thyme.
Track Listing: Can't We Be Friends?; Isn't This a Lovely Day?; Moonlight in Vermont; They Can't Take That Away from Me; Under a Blanket of Blue; Tenderly; A Foggy Day; Stars Fell on Alabama; Cheek to Cheek; The Nearness of You; April in Paris.
Personnel: Rickie Lee Jones: vocals; Tom Waits: vocals; Chris Botti: trumpet; Nam DePlum: piano; Bill S. Tuppé: bass; Justin Thyme: drums.
Record Label: Persiflage