Poetry of Love is an unabashedly—and surprisingly satisfying—sensual experience. Seducing the listener with her husky, alluring voice and subtle readings, Hagenbach invites listeners to participate in a maturely romantic meditation. While no individual selection represents the height of experiment or the epitome of stylization, Hagenbach succeeds where many other performers fail, sustaining a focused mood throughout the album.
Opening with a slightly hip-hop tinged, bossa based piece, “Tell Me About It,” Hagenbach demonstrates her ability to establish a contemporary feel without diverging too dramatically from the jazz forms and styles she explores more aggressively on the album’s subsequent tracks. Focused on the power of lyrics, Hagenbach relies more on sensitive interpretation and depth of material than musical and vocal gymnastics. This approach finds its most expressive moment with “Bittersweet,” a poignant endeavor built around a beautifully reflective lyric combining two Schoer poems.
On the album’s other standout piece, “Blues are Brewin’,” together with trumpet legend Clark Terry and guitar great Russel Malone, Hagenbach creates a classically structured blues dialogue. The collective conversation is full of humor, wit and feeling and reveals the importantance of powerful backing musicians to a vocalist’s success. Hagenbach works well with some of the most versatile and distinctive instrumentalists on the scene. Other tunes of note include the brooding “Dark Dreams,” and the silky, swinging “I’ve Got You Under My Skin.”
Supported by intelligent arrangements and a cadre of skilled musicians, Hagenbach offers with Poetry of Love a rich blend of vocal skill and musical styles. Open the Courvoisier and serve with candlelight.
Track Listing: 1. Tell Me All About It 2. I Can't Believe You're In Love With Me 3. Bittersweet 4. Never Let Me Go 5. Dark Dreams 6. Blues Are Brewin' 7. I've Got You Under My Skin 8. You Keep Calling Me 9. Watch What Happens 10. It Might As Well Be Spring
Personnel: Angela Hagenbach: Vocal;
Clark Terry: Trumpet and Mumbles;
Doug Auwarter: Drums and Percussion;
Jake Blanton: Guitar;
Don Braden: Tenor Sax;
Cecil Brooks III: Drums;
Dwayne Burno: Bass;
Rod Fleeman: Guitar;
Jimmy Heath: Tenor sax;
Gary Helm: ercussion
Russel Malone: Guitar;
Steve Rigazzi: Acoustic guitar and electic bass;
Paul Smith: Piano;
Roger Wilder: Piano, synthesizer;
James Williams: Piano.
Year Released: 2003
| Record Label: Amazon Records
| Style: Vocal
I was first exposed to jazz circa 1973, when I met a fellow who ran Kappy's Record Store over near 10th Ave., on 42nd St. in NYC. We really clicked and when I told him I played piano and went to Music & Art HS, and had just started at City College of NY as a music major, he asked if I liked jazz...I said yes but I didn't know much about it, but that I did have sheet music for many popular 1920's through 1940's tunes by noted composers (Porter; Gershwins; Irving Berlin; Rodgers & Hammerstein/Hart; Jerome Kern; Lerner & Loewe; etc.) that my mother had sung beautifully starting in the 1940's including tons of famous show tunes, and I played many of those songs already
I was first exposed to jazz circa 1973, when I met a fellow who ran Kappy's Record Store over near 10th Ave., on 42nd St. in NYC. We really clicked and when I told him I played piano and went to Music & Art HS, and had just started at City College of NY as a music major, he asked if I liked jazz...I said yes but I didn't know much about it, but that I did have sheet music for many popular 1920's through 1940's tunes by noted composers (Porter; Gershwins; Irving Berlin; Rodgers & Hammerstein/Hart; Jerome Kern; Lerner & Loewe; etc.) that my mother had sung beautifully starting in the 1940's including tons of famous show tunes, and I played many of those songs already. SOOOO... he started me off LP's by Oscar Peterson, Art Tatum, Bud Powell, Errol Garner, Bill Evans, Monty Alexander, Charlie Byrd, and Dave Brubeck... does it get any better than that? ...No, it doesn't. I was hooked!!
I met and had a master class with the late music giant John Lewis, leader of the Modern Jazz Quartet! This was at CCNY in 1977. I was blessed! It was an incredible class... how could it have been anything else?!?!
The first jazz record I bought was...I bought numerous records from my friend at the record store, as mentioned above. He introduced me to nothing but music giants/legends! I think The Dave Brubeck Quartet, Greatest Hits, was actually the first one.
My advice to new listeners... study first--understand the rudiments--solfeggio, keys, scales, and basic chords. Read a book or take a class that includes the study of chord progressions, especially in jazz. It should ideally be a piano class so you can play multiple notes together. Have a good EAR or else it's not really worth it in my view...to become a musician, a good EAR for music is about as fundamental as breathing! Learn to read chord charts--i.e., lead sheets - wherein you play various voicings of the chords--major, minor, dominant 7th (alterations of these, you can learn over time - the basic chords are most important for starters), plus the melody, on the piano or keyboard. If you have to read the exact notes, then it's not the same as actually internalizing it & getting it all into your head. If you can do this, I think you're ready not only for listening to jazz, but understanding many concepts of it! Of course...anyone can listen to jazz... but I think it's so good to also have a grasp of it.