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Janis Siegel: Janis Siegel - Nightsongs: A Late Night Interlude

C. Michael Bailey By

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Vocalist Janis Siegel is the mezzo-soprano/alto quarter of the Manhattan Transfer as well as half of the female contingency of the same with soprano Cheryl Bentyne. Like Bentyne, Siegel has managed a very successful solo career, releasing ten recordings since 1981. Nightsongs: A Late Night Interlude follows 2006's A Thousand Beautiful Things (Telarc, 2006) and 2004's Sketches of Broadway (Telarc). Siegel is a wholesale master of jazz vocals subgenre: ballads, scats, bop, she competently does them all. Nightsongs endeavors a theme of breezy Caribbean evenings, comfortably humid and crepuscular.

Sonically, this is an exceptional hearing. The engineer is impeccable, and the production is top notch without being overdone. There is a comfortable balance between the shiny and organic in this music. "Love Saves," "Slow," and "Marie" smell like salt and spray in the islands. "A Flower is a Lovesome Thing" is given a measure of funk among other piquant Latin delights, John di Martino modulates time and space over Christian McBride's muscular electric bass. Siegel shares a duet with Peter Eldridge on Jobim's "If You Never Come To Me" that is as provocative as it is simply elegant. Siegel continues to inhabit an upper echelon of jazz vocalist few can aspire to. Siegel wins with this fine band and material.

Track Listing: Love Saves (Salva Pantallas); Slow; Love and Paris Rain; If You Never Come to Me (Inutil Paisgem); Marie; You're Mine, You; Sweet September Rain; A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing; Midnight Sun; Lover; Say You'll Go; Clair De Lune.

Personnel: Janis Siegel: vocals; John Di Martino: piano, arrangements; Rob Mounsey: keyboards; Christian McBride: bass; Martin Wind: bass; Paul Meyers: guitar; Steve Khan: guitar, guiro; Dominick Farinacci: flugelhorn, trumpet; Joel Frahm: tenor and soprano saxophones; Alain Mallet: Melodica; Luisito Quintero: Percussion; Joel Rosenblatt: Drums; Peter Eldridge: Vocals; Roger Treece: vocals.

Title: Janis Siegel - Nightsongs: A Late Night Interlude | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Palmetto Records

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