Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
203

Mala Waldron: Always There

Ernest Barteldes By

Sign in to view read count Views
Mala Waldron: Always There When you hear Mala Waldron's soulful voice on Always There, you realize that you are experiencing something very special, for Waldron is not only an accomplished vocalist and songwriter, but also a fine pianist who hits the keys with great precision, bringing various musical influences into the jazz realm.

On the romantic "Because of You," which speaks of the happiness that Waldron has encountered with a special someone, bassist Miriam Sullivan performs a beautiful solo halfway through and also provides a backbone when the tune drifts into more of a light reggae mode.

The title track goes into more soul/gospel territory as the singer shows uncertainty in her life, pleading for guidance from God, who is "always there." This time around, veteran guitarist Steve Salerno shows his chops, delivering a highly technical but also heartfelt solo. His riffs throughout the tune are the perfect backdrop for Waldron's sad lament.

The group delivers the album's only cover, The Doors' "Light My Fire," with a funky feel that goes into a more playful mode—Salerno's guitar sounds freer than in the other tracks, and even Waldron sounds more relaxed as she is relieved from carrying one of her own compositions. This is definitely a fun track to hear, and it does justice to the original.

Another welcome surprise is "Too Good For Words," a mostly instrumental piece which begins with an R&B feel but then quickly mutates into a modern jazz tune, giving a chance for Waldron to show her keyboard and scat skills. Kudos also for Steve Salerno, who performs a twisting guitar solo halfway through.

Listen also to "I Do Remember You," an acoustic tip of the hat to Jobim with a bossa nova groove. Drummer Michael "T.A." Thompson channels not only Dom-Um Romao (with some assistance from Jim Clouse) but also does his own take on Jobim with his subtle backing vocals.


Track Listing: Whispers in The Wind; Because of You; Always There; Too Good For words; I Do Remember You; Ellie; Why; Can't Stop Thinking About You; Light My Fire; Proud Lion; Maybe It's Not So.

Personnel: Mala Waldron: vocals, piano/keyboards; Miriam Sullivan: bass; Steve Salerno: guitars; Michael "T.A." Thompson: drums, background vocals; Jim Clouse: additional pecussion (track 5).

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Soulful Sound | Style: Vocal


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Deep Resonance
Deep Resonance
Soulful Sound
2016
buy
Always There
Always There
Soulful Sound
2006
buy
Lullabye
Lullabye
Takoma
1996
buy
He's My Father
He's My Father
Takoma
1996
buy
Bob James Bob James
piano
Doug Carn Doug Carn
keyboard
Eric Bolvin Eric Bolvin
trumpet
Richard Tee Richard Tee
keyboard
Brown Baby Girl
band/orchestra
Carmen Lundy Carmen Lundy
vocalist
Pauline Jean Pauline Jean
vocalist

Mala Waldron Events

Date Event Time Tickets
Aug31Wed Mala Waldron Project
Club Bonafide
New York, NY
7:30 PM
$15

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.