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Jacintha: Autumn Leaves: The Songs Of Johnny Mercer

Jim Santella By

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For her sixth album, Jacintha pays homage to songwriter Johnny Mercer. Her warm, clear, delicate approach to storytelling enables the vocalist to deliver each favorite song in a comfortable manner with intimacy and charm. From Singapore, Jacintha has also had experience as an actress, enabling her to put herself into each situation as appropriate. A small ensemble culled from L.A.’s finest jazz accompanists backs her.

Jacintha is at her best when incorporating her impeccable enunciation on "I Remember You" and when dipping into her rich lower vocal register for a loping arrangement of "Trav’lin’ Light." Her acting experience shines through "Here’s To Life" with added dramatic feeling. A clarion trumpet blends appropriately to signal the album’s close. Jacintha’s supportive partners lend authenticity to the history behind each song. Teddy Edwards, who shares the microphone for half the album, provides fluid, blues-based phrases. Anthony Wilson and Kei Akagi lend more than harmony in their respective roles with different chording instruments. The guitarist provides a lovely "Skylark" interlude, while pianist Akagi lends spontaneity in duet format to the well-worn "Moon River." While she’s not always convincing on slower ballads, Jacintha’s warm, fragile, sophisticated delivery makes for an honorable tribute and a recommended listening experience.

Track Listing: And the Angels Sing; Skylark; One For My Baby; Midnight Sun; Autumn Leaves; Days Of Wine & Roses; I Remember You; Trav

Personnel: Jacintha- vocals; Teddy Edwards- tenor saxophone; Kei Akagi- piano; Darek Oles- bass; Larance Marable, Joe LaBarbera- drums; Anthony Wilson- guitar; Will Miller- trumpet.

Title: Autumn Leaves: The Songs Of Johnny Mercer | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: Groove Note Records

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