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by Jim Santella
Barbara Montgomery sings this slow and somber program of Christmas songs with piano accompaniment in a manner suited to the spiritual meaning of this holiday season. It's a time for reflection, for giving, for sharing, and for being there when our loved ones need us. Her prayerful interpretations leave us with humble tidings that weigh heavily on the holiday mood. Forget about jingling bells, Santa Claus, and visions of sugar plums. Consider instead the responsibility that we all bear at ...read more
by George Harris
Along with the maternal instincts of Nnenna Freelon and Carmen Lundy, add Barbara Montgomery, who delayed a singing career to raise a family. Chalk one up for motherhood, as this CD of originals and '70s compositions reflects a woman with something to offer.
Equipped with a husky voice (think Benny Carter's alto with lyrics), Montgomery simmers through a set of moody, reflective, and serious pieces. Evoking emotions similar to Branford Marsalis' Eternity, Trinity is more a tone poem ...read more
by Stephen Latessa
Trinity is an ambitious affair. It definitely takes some gumption to fashion an album from five originals and works by Leonard Cohen, Stevie Wonder, Van Morrison, and Cahn/Styne and hope that it will all hold together. Oh, and did I mention there is a song in French, too?
Surprisingly, Philadelphia-based vocalist Barbara Montgomery and her main collaborator, Aaron Graves, do a fine job of making such a disparate group of sources sound like they are all of a ...read more
by Michael P. Gladstone
Trinity is a very dramatic and theatrical effort that thematically strives to present all aspects of the human spirit, both positive and negative. Singer Barbara Montgomery has a dramatic and theatrical presentation, and her smoky voice is a fine way to deliver her messages on many of these mournful songs. One can easily describe her as being a chanteuse who would most likely be performing in a cabaret setting. On the album's sole standard, I Fall In Love Too Easily," ...read more
by Dave Nathan
With just two exceptions, Barbara Montgomery's new album relies entirely on her own compositions, many of which she collaborated on with her long time accompanist Barry Sames. The two exceptions are carry overs from her previous album Dakini Land which paid tribute to the compositions of Chick Corea and Neville Potter. The purpose of this album is one of providing therapy from the terrible events of September 11 and its aftermath. Consequently, the material on this session is very serious ...read more
by Dave Nathan
Barbara Montgomery, who has embraced Buddhism, takes the music and words of Chick Corea written mostly with Corea's long time collaborator Neville Potter, as well as her originals, and turns them into not only a tribute to Corea, but an exultation of a place in the Buddhist tradition, Dakini Land, a place in time that celebrates the female spirit. Montgomery and cohorts present musical themes designed to create images of possible experiences in this celestial place. There's happiness with a ...read more
by AAJ Staff
Barbara Montgomery’s recordings may not be retailed in vast quantities, and thus they may not be immediately available to listeners who enjoy enlightening jazz singing. But her latest recording, Dakini Land, is worth seeking. Perhaps suffering the ironic plight of Diana Krall--that is, that her physical appeal distracts from the perception of her inherent vocal talent--Montgomery leaves no doubt about the depth of her insight or commitment in this album, which focuses on the often overlooked vocal potential of Chick ...read more