Toni Jannotta: Jazz At The Ranch (2002)
From the Strauss Ranch in the Santa Monica mountains, Toni Jannotta is showcased nicely in this live recording. Jannotta sings with clarity (a recurring theme in this writer's reviews) and she treats the melody with the respect it deserves. The ensembles soloist's are allowed plenty of room to express themselves and the sound quality of the disc is extraordinary, making it a most pleasurable listening experience. The centerpiece of this CD is: "The Very Thought Of You" ..This brightly done version is a new twist on a fine song. Jannotta swings sweetly and Ken Rosser's Guitar solo adds a nice touch. Chuck Manning on Tenor Saxophone struts along merrily putting a definite exclamation point to the proceedings. "Echo"..This original composition by Toni Jannotta features a haunting melody plus a reflective set of lyrics that take the listener on a journey into life's losses.Tenderly sung with lyric emphasis. Bassist Carey Christensen and Tenor man Manning echo these sentiments in their solos. "Lullaby Of Birdland" Cool rendition of a hot tune by Toni Jannotta, plus Rosser's tasty Guitar statement and Manning's happy soliloquy. "The Man I Love"..Properly done rendition with no extra huzzaw or playing with the melody. Kudos to the singer for her intuition and presentation. "Moondance"..Van Morrison's piece swings beautifully. Jannotta is at her best on this one. Manning's efforts again enhance the proceedings. A fine ending to a fine recording.
Track Listing: 'Time's Lie', 'Twisted', 'Echo' 'Lullaby Of Birdland', 'Waltz For Debby', 'Midnight Sun' 'The Very Thought Of You', 'A Child Is Born', 'The Man I Love', 'Moondance'
Personnel: Toni Jannotta, Vocals, Ken Rosser, Guitar, Carey Christensen, Bass, Chuck Manning, Tenor Sax, Mike Faue, Drums and Percussion