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“Saloon” by Ron Kaplan and Weber Iago

"Saloon" by Ron Kaplan and Weber Iago

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Saloon (Kapland Records) by Ron Kaplan and Weber Iago

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From Saloon: The Ron Kaplan/Weber Iago Album(Kapland) Review by Jean Szlamowicz, Jazz Hot: Most readers will find this vocalist a very pleasant discovery. Warm and elegant voice, devoid of any sentimental bias, a fluid phrasing and real rhythmic finesse - this is the mark of a true singer and not just of some simple sweet-sounding crooner. Ron Kaplan is a crooner all right but one with expression and not a bit of bad taste. As could be expected, he's a stalwart defender of the great American songbook and has founded the American Songbook Preservation Society. (http://www.greatamericansongbook.org/).

He makes his point clear by covering Ellington, Gershwin, Jobim or Burt Baccarach with rare freshness. Paradoxically enough, although the genre of his singing comes out of the Tony Bennett and Frank Sinatra tradition, he does not owe them anything in terms of pure singing style. He is a very original stylist whose phrasing reveals no aggressive phrasing but no weakness either. He knows the right moves but avoids making them sound artificial - and his pronunciation is impeccable. There is so much balance that there isn't a single low point in the album.

With the expert and sugar-free support of Brazilian pianist Weber Iago, Ron Kaplan brings convincing excellence and does justice with his deep voice to songs whose every inflexion he knows backwards. He can afford some interesting variations, easily twisting the melody of "I Got Rhythm" or "Alfie". He is above all an interpreter, detailing the possibilities of each song, thus showing true humility. The seduction also stems from the duo's clear sobriety. You can take the advice of one who usually cannot stand any crooner.

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