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Kendra Shank Quartet: Mosaic

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Kendra Shank Quartet: Mosaic Kendra Shank is a complete vocalist—an appealing and intelligent interpreter of known and unknown material, a startlingly inventive improviser and the possessor of a rich, darkish voice that draws in the listener with feelings both familiar and brand new. Mosaic is a beautiful collection of tunes from favorite composers—some her friends, others her inspirations, all now her musical family.

Right from the start Shank makes it known that what matters is expressively emotional music through a poignant ballad reading of the Carole King pop hit "So Far Away." She's gorgeously complemented by the incandescent clarinet of Billy Drewes. Pianist Frank Kimbrough, bassist Dean Johnson and drummer Tony Romero—her regular group—lock together tightly but manage to give each other the space to expand. Drewes and guitarist Ben Monder are guests but they become part of the same dynamic.

Shank draws from composers as diverse as Irving Berlin, Cole Porter and Johnny Mandel on the longtime standard side and from some contemporary wizards such as Kirk Nurock and Kimbrough. Lyricists John and Paula Hackett turn Cedar Walton's "Mosaic" into "Life's Mosaic" and it's buoyed by the singer's mysterious "Eastern" improvisations and the tenor obligati by Drewes and Monder's sensitive guitar. Kimbrough and his wife, vocalist Maryanne DeProphetis, have contributed the noble "For Duke" and Shank finds the sensuous majesty in both the tune and its original inspiration. Nurock is a notably prolific composer of a broad array of tunes and Kendra mines treasure in two—the lightly anthemic "I'm Movin' On" (with lyrics by another vocalist, Judy Niemack) and the hymn-like adaptation of texts by the 13th century Sufi poet, Rumi, "I'll Meet You There."

Mosaic reflects what feels like just a part of Shank's vast and complex interests but it becomes, as with all of her recordings, a world unto itself.


Track Listing: So Far Away; Life's Mosaic; Reflections in Blue/Blue Skies; Laughing at Life/Smile; The Shining Sea; Water From Your Spring/Beautiful Love; For Duke; All of You; Time Remembered; I'm Movin' On; I'll Meet You There.

Personnel: Kendra Shank: voice; Frank Kimbrough: piano; Dean Johnson: bass; Tony Moreno: drums; Billy Drewes: soprano and tenor saxophones, clarinet; Ben Monder: guitar.

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Challenge Records | Style: Modern Jazz


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Kendra Shank Events

Date Event Time Tickets
Sep27Tue Kendra Shank
Spare Time Northampton City Sports Grille
Northampton, MA
7:30 pm
Sep27Tue Kendra Shank On Vocals
City Sports Grille At Spare Time Northampton
Northampton, MA
7:30 PM
Sep30Fri Kendra Shank
55 Bar
New York, NY
6:00 pm
Oct1Sat Kendra Shank
Next Stage
Putney, VT
7:30 pm
Oct28Fri Kendra Shank
55 Bar
New York, NY
6:00 pm
Nov25Fri Kendra Shank
55 Bar
New York, NY
6:00 pm
Dec30Fri Kendra Shank
55 Bar
New York, NY
6:00 pm

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