All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 (or more) and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help

315

Blossom Dearie: My Gentleman Friend

David Rickert By
Published:
Sign in to view read count
Blossom Dearie: My Gentleman Friend Let’s be clear about one thing from the start. This is more of a pop album than a jazz album, and anyone who buys My Gentleman Friend for the presence of any of the other musicians involved – especially Kenny Burrell – will probably be disappointed. Those who have encountered Blossom Dearie on any of her other Verve releases will be wiser, for she has always been more of an elegant cabaret singer whose delicate voice and modest piano playing lifts her just slightly above a mere interpreter of tunes. Despite the fact that her renditions of song like “You Fascinate Me So” are teeming with sweetness, they have about as much substance and weight as a soap bubble and are perhaps best experienced as background music for a romantic dinner rather than as careful listening.

However, Dearie would probably be satisfied with this assessment, content to deliver pleasant pop to the masses. It a shame, though, that Burrell and Bobby Jaspar (who guests on two tracks) aren’t given more to do than add a few indifferent solos. While Dearie has turned in excellent performances before – her album of Comden and Green is a subdued classic and features a more eager Burrell – she makes some odd choices on this 1959 record, as if she’s running out of good songs to interpret. The obligatory French tunes are fairly pleasant, but forgettable and only “Someone To Watch Over Me” has a depth that suggests Dearie has a real knack for putting an intimate spin on a song we have all heard before.

Perhaps Dearie’s real legacy will always be paving the way for sultry songbirds like Diana Krall, and fans of that particular style will probably find My Gentleman Friend appealing. Others will wish a meal was served before dessert.

Visit Verve on the web at www.vervemusicgroup.com .


Track Listing: 1. Little Jazz Bird 2. Gentleman Friend 3. It

Personnel: Blossom Deaire-vocal, piano; Kenny Burrell-guitar; Ray Brown-bass; Ed Thigpen-drums; Bobby Jaspar-flute.

Year Released: 1959 | Record Label: Verve Music Group | Style: Vocal


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
[no cover]
Four Classic Albums...
Export Label
2009
buy
[no cover]
I Like London In The...
Export Label
2009
buy
Blossom Time at Ronnie Scott's
Blossom Time at...
Verve Music Group
2007
buy
[no cover]
Manhattan
Export Label
2005
buy
From The Meticulous To The Sublime
From The Meticulous...
Daffodil Records
2005
buy
[no cover]
The Diva Series:...
Export Label
2003
buy
Chet Baker Chet Baker
trumpet
Count Basie Count Basie
piano
Sarah Vaughan Sarah Vaughan
vocalist
Ella Fitzgerald Ella Fitzgerald
vocalist
Julie London Julie London
vocalist
Dinah Washington Dinah Washington
vocalist
Carmen McRae Carmen McRae
vocalist
Rosemary Clooney Rosemary Clooney
vocalist
June Christy June Christy
vocalist

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.