All About Jazz

Home » Articoli » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

1

Zara McFarlane: If You Knew Her

Angelo Leonardi By

Sign in to view read count
Non chiamatelo retro soul. Quello di Zara McFarlane (e dell'inglese Corinne Bailey Rae, della francese Laika Fatien e altre) è un fenomeno nuovo. Sono cantanti europee dalla pelle nera che fondono jazz e soul music rivestendoli di una patina pop, intima e raffinata. Senza esagerare nei giudizi la qualità è alta e si va oltre l'imitazione dei modelli americani.
Zara McFarlane ha trent'anni, è nata e cresciuta a Londra da famiglia giamaicana. Nell'infanzia ha assorbito sia il reggae che i modelli della black popular music statunitense (Michael Jackson, Lauryn Hill, Luther Vandross) e studiato musica nell'adolescenza alla Guildhall School of Music & Drama. Nasce così il suo amore per il jazz e le sue grandi interpreti vocali: "Ho iniziato ad amare le canzoni dei musical e ne ho apprese una tonnellata -ha detto-ma ho poi scoperto che esistevano anche le versioni jazz ed erano quelle che preferivo"

Dopo il debutto nel 2011 con Until Tomorrow, Zara pubblica un nuovo lavoro sempre sotto la guida di Gilles Peterson, il produttore che l'ha scoperta e valorizzata, scritturandola nella sua Brownswood Recordings. Rispetto a quel lavoro -un classico combo jazz con cantante-questo lavoro ne svela le doti d'interprete e autrice anche nei territori attigui: va da momenti soul a intense folk-ballad, fino alla rilettura di cover rock come "Police & Thieves," resa famosa dai The Clash. If You Knew Her è un disco maturo che si snoda secondo un filo preciso, quasi un concept album, che la cantante dedica a tutte le donne che hanno segnato la sua vita "con forza, coraggio, empatia, humour, saggezza e amore."

La sua voce non indulge in timbriche scure o interpretazioni acrobatiche ma offre interpretazioni dal caldo appeal, malinconiche e romantiche. Il suo terreno preferito sono ballad o temi modali che lei affronta con intima colloquialità, trasformandole in episodi pregnanti. Tra i momenti più significativi ricordiamo il brano d'apertura "Open Heart" (dal suggestivo connubio tra l'intensa vocalità soul, il clima cameristico e l'accompagnamento dell'hang) ed ancora "You'll Get Me in Trouble" (tanto vicino allo spirito di Amy Winehouse), la citata "Police & Thieves" (trasformata in un'appassionata jazz ballad), le modali "Angie La La" e "Woman in the Ovile Groves." In quest'ultima il sax tenore di Binker Golding accentua un suggestivo clima coltraniano.

Track Listing: Open Heart; Her Eyes; Move; You’ll Get Me In Trouble; Police & Thieves; Spinning Wheel; Plain Gold Ring; Angie La La; The Games We Played; Woman in the Olive Groves; Love.

Personnel: Zara McFarlane: vocals (all), piano (6), guitar (4); Peter Edwards: piano (2, 3, 5, 9, 10, 11); Gavin Barras: Bass (1, 8); Max Luthert: bass (2, 3, 5, 7, 10); Moses Boyd: drums (3, ; Andy Chapman: drums (2, 10); Taz Modi: drums (8); Binker Golding: tenor saxophone (10); Leron Thomas: trumpet (8); Rachel Gladwin: harp (8).

Title: If You Knew Her | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: Brownswood Recordings

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Radio
CD/LP/Track Review
Profiles
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Arise!

Arise!

Brownswood Recordings
2017

buy
Arise

Arise

Brownswood Recordings
2017

buy
If You Knew Her

If You Knew Her

Brownswood Recordings
2014

buy
 

Angie La La (Yoruba...

Brownswood Recordings
2013

buy
 

More Than Mine

Brownswood Recordings
2012

buy
Until Tomorrow

Until Tomorrow

Brownswood Recordings
2011

buy

Related Articles

Read Lab 2018, The Rhythm of the Road CD/LP/Track Review
Lab 2018, The Rhythm of the Road
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 25, 2018
Read Live CD/LP/Track Review
Live
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: September 25, 2018
Read 8 Songs CD/LP/Track Review
8 Songs
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 25, 2018
Read Facing Dragons CD/LP/Track Review
Facing Dragons
by Chris Mosey
Published: September 25, 2018
Read Brothers CD/LP/Track Review
Brothers
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 24, 2018
Read The Fearless Flyers CD/LP/Track Review
The Fearless Flyers
by John Bricker
Published: September 24, 2018
Read "From Beyond" CD/LP/Track Review From Beyond
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 7, 2018
Read "Cosmological Horizons" CD/LP/Track Review Cosmological Horizons
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 6, 2018
Read "Origin Suite" CD/LP/Track Review Origin Suite
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 5, 2018
Read "Witches Stew: A Tribute to Miles Davis" CD/LP/Track Review Witches Stew: A Tribute to Miles Davis
by Doug Collette
Published: October 15, 2017
Read "Come Together" CD/LP/Track Review Come Together
by Geannine Reid
Published: July 30, 2018
Read "Listening To Pictures (Pentimento Volume one)" CD/LP/Track Review Listening To Pictures (Pentimento Volume one)
by Chris May
Published: April 23, 2018