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"Come in and join the party," Lena calls, slapping her long fingers on an empty seat.
You best take her invitation, ‘cuz Ms. Horne knows of what she sings. Long-established as a jazz legend, Lena Horne continues her reign as queen of the blue note with her latest Blue Note release. In addition to touching up personal favorites such as "As Long As I Live" (which sparkles as brightly as when Horne performed it live for her classic concert collection "The Lady and Her Music," yet with even more snap and sheen), Horne creeps through "It’s Alright With Me" and clips through "Willow Weep For Me." Always a lady, she opens wide to proclaim "After You" and allows a "Sleepin’ Bee" to laze undistrubed while she surveys the musical lansdscape. Though she may not have the note-holding force of her past, Lena Horne is still as brassy and clarion bold as her name would dictate. Asking the musical questions "What Am I Here For" and "How Long Has This Been Going On," Lena simultaneously answers these questions for her listeners: To hear her sing, and for as long as she continues to do so.
Track Listing: 1. Some of My Best Friends Are the Blues
2. As Long as I Live
3. Autumn in New York
4. It's All Right With Me
5. Sleepin' Bee
7. How Long Has This Been Going On?
8. After You
9. Willow Weep for Me
10. What Am I Here For?
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.