442

Dinah Washington: Music for Lovers

Chris M. Slawecki By

Sign in to view read count
Dinah Washington: Music for Lovers Dinah Washington's biting, blues-smoked phrasing is often cited as the primordial ground from which singers such as Esther Phillips and Nancy Wilson blossomed, and through them, more contemporary vocalists like Chaka Khan and Patti Labelle subsequently bloomed. This new collection of ballads draws from Washington's 1962-63 recording prime, a fertile period when she released several albums of ballads and blues, arranged and conducted by longtime Frank Sinatra favorite Don Costa, for Roulette and Mercury Records.

Like every female blues/jazz vocalist of the past century, Washington operates in a world first illuminated by the legendary Billie Holiday. Holiday's classic composition "Lover Man opens this set in dark shadow; the instrumentation lays out a typical "ballad with strings homogenized session, but Washington's vocal phrasing burns more acidic, almost bitter. Washington also mulls over a "Blue Gardenia (Holiday's trademark flower) accompanied by an ensemble that sounds smaller and bluer.

"Romance in the Dark presents Washington at her wanton best; she writhes under the cover of Billy Butler's legendary soul-jazz guitar, relaxing to bounce with the insouciant lilt of the blues then grinding her hips down to turn out the final verse in a voice that's most authoritatively bad-ass and beautiful, her own flower growing from the root of Bessie Smith. Her interpretation makes it clear: she ain't talking about romance—she's talking about ballin' in the dark. But for the most of the rest of album, Sings for Lovers presents the Dinah Washington so focused on refinement that she distills the blues completely out of her repertoire.


Track Listing: Lover Man; For All We Know; Romance in the Dark; I Didn't Know About You; You're a Sweetheart; Blue Gardenia; I'm Gonna Laugh You Out of My Life; The Good Life; That Old Feeling; If It's the Last Thing I Do; He's My Guy; I'll Never Stop Loving You.

Personnel: Dinah Washington: vocals; Orchestra arranged and conducted by Don Costa; Orchestra arranged and conducted by Fred Norman; Eddie Chamblee: tenor saxophone; Billy Butler: guitar; Patti Bown: piano; Milt Hinton: bass; Earl Edwards: tenor saxophone; Jack Wilson: piano; Jimmy Sigler: organ; Everett Barksdale: guitar; Jimmy Thomas: drums.

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Blue Note Records | Style: Vocal


Shop

More Articles

Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 26, 2017
Read This Is Nate Najar CD/LP/Track Review This Is Nate Najar
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Joy Comes Back CD/LP/Track Review Joy Comes Back
by James Nadal
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Apocalypse CD/LP/Track Review Apocalypse
by Julian Derry
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read "Poetry For The Beat Generation" CD/LP/Track Review Poetry For The Beat Generation
by Sacha O'Grady
Published: December 11, 2016
Read "Habana Dreams" CD/LP/Track Review Habana Dreams
by James Nadal
Published: July 5, 2016
Read "Live at the JazzRoom" CD/LP/Track Review Live at the JazzRoom
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 17, 2016
Read "June" CD/LP/Track Review June
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "Shipwreck 4" CD/LP/Track Review Shipwreck 4
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 13, 2016
Read "The Linda Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review The Linda Sessions
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 30, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!