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
136

Tierney Sutton: American Road

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Tierney Sutton: American Road The name "Tierney Sutton Band" is not only inclusive but entirely appropriate, as Sutton, one of the current scene's most versatile and accomplished jazz singers, uses her supple voice as an instrument to complement those of pianist Christian Jacob, drummer Ray Brinker and bassists Trey Henry or Kevin Axt on American Road, the band's spacious and colorful salute to the country of its birth. The album has been nominated for Grammy Awards for best instrumental recording (small groups) and best arrangement for group with vocal, for "On Broadway."

Speaking of arrangements, they are in each instance a collective endeavor with everyone in the band providing input on an equal basis. "On Broadway" and every other number was arranged by the group as a whole, not by any one (or more) of its members. That's one reason, aside from its longevity (more than a decade together) that the band sounds so remarkably compliant and well-balanced. While Sutton is understandably in the forefront vocally, she is inspired and enhanced at every turn by her stellar supporting cast, which seizes every opportunity to add an impressive phrase or modulation of its own.

Before traveling to "Broadway," American Road sets the scene with a trio of traditional folk songs, "Wayfaring Stranger" and a medley of "Oh Shenandoah" and "The Water Is Wide." John Newton's hymn, "Amazing Grace," precedes three numbers from George Gershwin's groundbreaking musical Porgy and Bess—"It Ain't Necessarily So" (during which we learn that whales are mammals, not fish), "Summertime" and "My Man's Gone Now" (the last encompassing a radiant solo by Jacob). Sutton softly caresses every measure of the standard "Tenderly," which is followed by the too-seldom-heard Harold Arlen/Yip Harburg anthem, "The Eagle and Me," introduced by Dooley Wilson in the 1944 Broadway musical Bloomer Girl.

Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim are given their due with three memorable songs from West Side Story—the soul-stirring ballad "Somewhere" and a medley of "Something's Coming" and "Cool"—before Sutton and the band wrap things up with the patriotic theme "America the Beautiful." From end to end, this Road is paved with earnestness and affection, making any journey along its boulevards and byways as enticing as it is pleasurable.


Track Listing: Wayfaring Stranger; Oh Shenandoah / The Water Is Wide; On Broadway; Amazing Grace; It Ain't Necessarily So; Summertime; My Man's Gone Now; Tenderly; The Eagle and Me; Somewhere; Something's Coming / Cool; America the Beautiful.

Personnel: Tierney Sutton: vocals; Christian Jacob: piano; Kevin Axt: acoustic, electric bass; Trey Henry: acoustic, electric bass; Ray Brinker: drums, percussion.

Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: BFM | Style: Vocal


Shop

Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
Read more articles
Paris Sessions
Paris Sessions
BFM Jazz
2014
buy
After Blue
After Blue
BFM Jazz
2013
buy
American Road
American Road
BFM
2012
buy
The Tierney Sutton Band: American Road
The Tierney Sutton...
BFM
2011
buy
American Road
American Road
BFM
2011
buy
Desire
Desire
Telarc Records
2009
buy
Ella Fitzgerald Ella Fitzgerald
vocalist
Sophie Milman Sophie Milman
vocalist
Sara Gazarek Sara Gazarek
vocalist
Julie London Julie London
vocalist
June Christy June Christy
vocalist
Jane Monheit Jane Monheit
vocalist
Betty Carter Betty Carter
vocalist
Karrin Allyson Karrin Allyson
vocalist
Helen Merrill Helen Merrill
vocalist

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus
Support our sponsor

Sponsor: Motéma Music | BUY IT  

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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