Tierney Sutton: Unsung Heroes (1999)
Vocalese. The mellow personalities of the guitar flugelhorn, and trombone, coupled wish the breathy piping of an alto/soprano voice combine to make Unsung Heroes a very cool proposition. Several primarily vocalese discs have found their way to me recently, all sporting accomplished, even incendiary, vocal challenges met. I would not describe Tierney Sutton's voice as such. She is dry ice cool like the 1950s Art Pepper alto saxophone. The results are very appealing and technically accomplished.
Scat Cat. Sutton is not afraid to scat. No, not at all. She offers an amazing duet with Buddy Childers on "Bernie's Tune" and trades fours evenly with Gary Foster on "Indiana/Donna Lee". Dizzy's "Con Alma" is very cool with a masterful interpolation of Bach's "Aire on a G Sting". The entire accompaniment is tastefully understated, leaving the front light to Sutton, who willingly shares it with the soloists. Buy this for "Bernie's Tune." There exists a perfect empathy between Sutton and her band on this recording. The sonics are superb and engineering accomplished.
The jazz world is still looking for singers to step into the shoes of Ella, Sarah, and Betty. Tierney Sutton jumps into the fray with authority on this disc. Her voice is more of a finesse versus power game, but finesse she has.
Track Listing: Remember Me; Early Autumn; A Timeless Place; Bernie's Tune' Spring Is Here; Joy Spring; All For One; Indiana/Donna Lee; When The Lights Are Low; Con Alma. (Total Time: 57:28)
Personnel: Tierney Sutton: Vocals; Christian Jacob: Piano; Trey Henry: Bass; Ken Wild: Bass; Ray Brinker: Drums; Gary Foster: Alto Flute, Alto Saxophone; Buddy Childers: Flugelhorn; Alan Kaplan: Trombone; Jamie Findley: Guitar.
Record Label: Telarc Records