Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross: Sing A Song of Basie (1957)
The results are instantly appealing and downright fun; the Basie charts are enjoyable enough as played by the orchestra, but gain a new level of excitement and a different spirit in these vocalized versions. The lyrics are written not only to communicate the feeling of each song, but also for the rhythm and sound of each word. Some clever interplay is created through the back and forth banter of individual voices, harkening back to the original source of call-and-response. The singing is impressive; some of these lines were difficult enough as instrumental solos, but singing them adds another degree of challenge. Hendricks in particular seems to have a knack for tongue-twisting, rapid lines delivered in huge intervals. Annie Ross has an impressive range as well; she can mimic the high register trumpet lines with ease. The smartest move of all was to include Basie veterans in the rhythm section; they keeps things firmly grounded in the spirit of the Basie orchestra and add the right amount of swing and authenticity to ensure a great delivery.
Vocals are always more
Track Listing: Everyday, It's Sand Man!, Two for the Blues, One O'Clock Jump, Little Pony, Down for the Double, Fiesta in Blue, Down for the Count, Blues Backstage, Avenue C, Four Brothers, Cloudburst, Standin' on the Corner.
Personnel: Dave Lambert, Jon Hendricks, and Annie Ross, vocals; Nat Pierce, piano; Freddie Green, guitar; Eddie Jones, bass; Sonny Payne, drums
Record Label: Verve Music Group