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There is something strangely perfect about Jimmy Scott’s singing. And I do not attribute this to his well-documented Kallman’s Syndrome, a condition that has preserved his beautiful high tenor. Mr. Scott’s recordings are characterized by an uncharacterizable voice and delivery that keeps the listener off center. This works both to his advantage and disadvantage. While "Moonglow" is delivered and accepted with a smile, the Beatles’ "Yesterday" is offered with disconcerting vocal starts and stops. Still provocative, it is not bad, just anxious.
Scott is unsurpassed as a singer of romantic ballads, particularly those ballads associated with loss. This is best illustrated by "How Long has This Been Going On" and "Solitude" where he infuses the lyrics with an almost foreboding familiarity with disappointment and loss. This often been one of the most frequently considered criticisms of Mr. Scott’s style. I feel that this may be his greatest asset as it imparts that intangible thing to his voice and delivery.
Scott is supported by many of his labelmates at Milestone and friends from the New York scene. Joe Beck does his best Bucky Pizzarelli on the title cut, with Eric Alexander providing tenor obbligato and the ever-present George Mraz providing bass support. A piano who’s who appears on the disc, including Cyrus Chestnut, Larry Willis, Renee Rosnes, and Michael Kanan. Gregoire Maret plays beautiful jazz harmonica on "Yesterday" and "Solitude." Like his previous Milestone releases, Moonglow honors the talent of Mr. Jimmy Scott and will delight all Scott fans.
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.