Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
263

Mark Murphy: Once To Every Heart

By

Sign in to view read count
Mark Murphy: Once To Every Heart Mark Murphy just gets better and better, to steal a phrase, like an elegant wine. And he is fearless. In his distinguished career, he's covered it all: blues, Latin, contemporary pop, songbooks (most notably Cole Porter, Joe Williams, Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields). And he still remains one of the foremost interpreters of the Great American Songbook. The ballads-only session Once to Every Heart, his first offering on Verve, finds him at the top of his art.

He revives the wonderful "I'm Through with Love in a reflective performance laced with sadness, restraining his impulse to use his formidable musical prowess just for show. In the opening chorus of the medley "When I Fall in Love/My One and Only Love, Murphy calls on his abundant technique as he isolates and caresses each word, still never sacrificing the story.

At this stage in his career, all the hallmarks of his style are on display, even in this low-key setting. He remains one of the most surefooted singers in the jazz pantheon. His rhythmic sense is impeccable, allowing him to sing lines and phrases that are unattainable by most other singers; his intonation is precise yet not clinical; his melodic sensibility allows him to use a song's harmonies to reimagine and transform melodies; and he is fearless emotionally, unafraid to dig deeply into a song's story to mine its essence. Murphy even provides his own piano accompaniment on "Do Nothing Till You Here from Me and is responsible for the piano and horn arrangements.

The lesser-known songs—"Our Game, Paul Weston's seldom-heard gem "Once to Every Heart, and Murphy's own "I Know You from Somewhere —fit this brooding session perfectly. He also resurrects "Bein' Green, a song that's already been given stellar performances by Ray Charles and Shirley Horn.

Murphy has chosen a strong supporting cast. Nan Schwartz's string arrangements set the songs off beautifully. Producer Till Bronner's trumpet and flugelhorn provide low-key counterpoint with the singer; they both work hand in hand with the sturdy, sensitive rhythm team of pianist Frank Chastenier and bassist Christian von Kaphengst.

Once to Every Heart, a masterful ballad recording replete with great songs, unfolds with grace and passion. The only question remaining is this: where will Mark Murphy turn for his next session?


Track Listing: I'm Through with Love; When I Fall in Love/My One and Only Love; Skylark/You Don't Know What Love Is; Our Game; I Know You from Somewhere; Bein' Green; Once to Every Heart; It Never Entered My Mind; Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me; Love Is Here to Stay.

Personnel: Mark Murphy: vocals, piano (9); Till Bronner: trumpet and flugelhorn, producer; Frank Chastenier: piano (except 9); Christian von Kaphengst: acoustic bass (1,3-5,7,9); Nan Schwartz: orchestra arranger and conductor; string orchestra (1,3-5,7,9)

Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Verve Music Group | Style: Vocal


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Profiles
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Live in Athens, Greece
Live in Athens, Greece
Harbinger
2016
buy
A Beautiful Friendship: Remembering Shirley Horn
A Beautiful...
Gearbox Records
2013
buy
[no cover]
Mark Murphy - A...
W.E.R.F.
2013
buy
Love Is What Stays
Love Is What Stays
Verve Music Group
2007
buy
[no cover]
Stolen Moments...
W.E.R.F.
2007
buy
Once To Every Heart
Once To Every Heart
Verve Music Group
2006
buy
Sarah Vaughan Sarah Vaughan
vocalist
Kurt Elling Kurt Elling
vocalist
Michael Franks Michael Franks
vocalist
Bobby McFerrin Bobby McFerrin
vocalist
Carmen McRae Carmen McRae
vocalist
Benny Carter Benny Carter
sax, alto
June Christy June Christy
vocalist
Anita O'Day Anita O'Day
vocalist
Joe Williams Joe Williams
vocalist
Mose Allison Mose Allison
composer/conductor
Karrin Allyson Karrin Allyson
vocalist
Johnny Hartman Johnny Hartman
vocalist

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus
Support our sponsor

Sponsor: Motéma Music | BUY IT  

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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