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Chris Connor with Stan Kenton And His Orchestra: Connor Sings — Kenton Swings

Read "Connor Sings — Kenton Swings" reviewed by Jack Bowers

However listeners may receive this “new" album from Sounds of Yesteryear, there's no gainsaying its title, Connor Sings—Kenton Swings, as that secures its contents in a neat little box with no loose ends in sight. There's also no denying that these seventeen songs by vocalist Chris Connor and the dynamic Stan Kenton Orchestra were recorded more than sixty-five years ago. In terms of performance, the impact is negligible; in terms of sound, not as harmful as one might imagine.

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Chris Connor: Chris Connor Sings Gentle Bossa Nova

Read "Chris Connor Sings Gentle Bossa Nova" reviewed by David Rickert

If you were a jazz singer in the mid-sixties, chances are you recorded a bossa nova album. It might have been great, it might have been terrible, but it most likely fell somewhere in-between. You may not have wanted to record one, but bossa nova was too popular a fad to resist, and not many people were buying jazz records anyway. And, at least, bossa nova records allowed you the opportunity to use your jazz chops on something deliberately commercial.

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Chris Connor: All About Chris

Read "All About Chris" reviewed by David Rickert

Chris Connor is one of many blond-haired kittens whose vocals were popular during the fifties. Like many of her fellow canaries, she got her start in the big bands (Thornhill's and Kenton's, in this case) before becoming successful enough to strike out on her own. Leaving the big band sound behind for the intimacy of the small groups, Connor showed an above average knack at interpreting popular tunes, as well as a penchant for keeping her jazz roots intact.

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Chris Connor: Haunted Heart

Read "Haunted Heart" reviewed by Mathew Bahl

There is always a moment of trepidation when a jazz legend produces a new record after an absence of several years; a fear that what is will diminish the memory of what was. Thankfully, that is not the case with Haunted Heart, Chris Connor’s wonderful new CD on the HighNote label.

Vocally, the 73-year old singer sounds far younger than her chronological age. Ms. Connor’s voice has dropped noticeably in pitch over the last 30 years. However, she has compensated ...

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Chris Connor: Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years

Read "Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

There's no doubt that labels have a purpose in terms of organizing things, but they also tend to get in the way when looking at such less objective items as art and music. For example, if you were to ask the average jazz buff to name singers that fit the category of “cool vocalists" names to be included might be June Christy, Peggy Lee, Anita O'Day, and Chris Connor. As much as this activity serves as a reference, it also ...

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Chris Connor: Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years

Read "Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years" reviewed by AAJ Staff

If one were to name the greatest female jazz vocalist of all time, that honor would undoubtedly go to Billie Holiday. It was Lady Day who virtually single handedly created the art of genuine jazz singing, as distinct from “pop" vocalization, which became the purview of so many singers who may have had the ability to “swing," but certainly could not be considered jazz singers. And Billie's interpretations of so many standards and her own compositions continue, via recording, to ...

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Chris Connor: Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years

Read "Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years" reviewed by John Sharpe

Vocalist Chris Connor first achieved national prominence during a ten-month stint with band leader Stan Kenton in 1952. Between 1956 and 1963, Connor recorded 12 fabulous albums for Atlantic Records and this 40-track, 2-CD set, provides a comprehensive overview of her output with the label. The repertoire features some of the best tunes from the classic American songbook and each showcases Connor's cool, limpid tone and vibratoless delivery. She is accompanied by some of the greatest names in jazz. Al ...

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Chris Connor: Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years

Read "Warm Cool: The Atlantic Years" reviewed by Jim Santella

Shortly before signing with Atlantic, singer Chris Connor released an album on the Charly label titled Cool Chris. Her style of singing conjures up the title of that 1954 album in the same manner as a genre of jazz referred to as “the cool school." It’s the same use of the adjective we apply when dealing cards with a “cool hand," driving through rush hour traffic with a “cool head" or handling a frustrating day at the office with coolness ...


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