Home » Jazz Articles » Mercedes Nicole: People Are Talking

1

Album Review

Mercedes Nicole: People Are Talking

By

Sign in to view read count
Mercedes Nicole: People Are Talking
The difference between Mercedes Nicole's Beautiful Alignment (Self Produced, 2013) and People Are Talking is artistic growth and confidence. Beautiful Alignment was fueled by a youthful ambition and precocious talent. Nicole's evolution from that point manifests squarely in the refining fire of performance and practice, both which enhance her existing gift. People Are Talking reveals mature, completely polished approach to standards and originals that offers more than a recapitulation of previous approaches.

Nicole's standards choices are a mixed bag of the familiar and newly found. She has honed her ballad singing as evidenced on a brilliantly slow take on the Coleman/Lipton classic "Would You Believe." Pronounced are Nicole's rich alto voice and Clipper Anderson's malleable bass playing. This singer displays fortitude in addressing Van Morrison's "Moondance," which she delivers with such an earthy presence, the listener may very well blush. Darren Motamedy flute is spot on and, did I mention that the song swings?

The original ballad, "Touch the Sky" is anchored with the plaintive cello of John William Smith. Nicole sings emotively, infusing her composition with a lifetime of blues and church, an aural environment she brings also to the title piece. The takes this thread to its logical conclusion with the humid and fecund "Chicken, Biscuits & Gravy>." Here Nicole shows no fear of getting her hands dirty in the blues. People Are Talking is the release that Mercedes Nicole deserves to make and we all benefit from that.

Track Listing

Would You Believe; Moondance; Touching the Sky; People are Talking; Dindi; Hushabye; I Loves You Porgy; Fly Me to the Moon; Chicken, Biscuits and Gravy.

Personnel

Mercedes Nicole: vocals; Darin Clendenin: piano; Clipper Anderson: bass; D’Vonne Lewis, Don Gunn: Drums; Darren Motamedy: flute; Susan Pascal: vibraphone; Alexey Nikolaev: saxophone; William Smith: Cello.

Album information

Title: People Are Talking | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Self Produced

Post a comment about this album


FOR THE LOVE OF JAZZ
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

WE NEED YOUR HELP
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.

Tags

Jazz Near Washington
Events Guide | Venue Guide | Local Businesses | More...

More

Popular

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and includes upcoming jazz events near you.