239

Kim Nalley: She Put a Spell On Me

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
Kim Nalley: She Put a Spell On Me With this tribute to the life and career of Nina Simone, San Francisco-based singer Kim Nalley fills the room with expressed emotion. Recorded live at Pearl's, She Put a Spell On Me jumps with the rhythms and melodies that captured our hearts during Simone's lifetime. The pianist, folk singer, protest singer and jazz singer, known to us as the High Priestess of Soul, left an indelible mark. Simone deserves hundreds of tributes like this one.

Nalley and her band do it their own way. Piano and guitar play an important role in the music as the singer puts her audience at ease with songs that Nina Simone interpreted so effectively. Gospel and spirituals play a large part in the album's makeup. "Trouble in Mind simmers with a Deep South awareness. "In the Evening by the Moonlight speaks of reverence and compassion. "I Wish I Knew How it Would Feel to be Free, the high point of the album, finds the singer riding high on spirit and strong on emotion.

Guitarist Greg Skaff contributes cohesive counterpoint and dashing solo work, while pianist Tammy Hall does the same from a different viewpoint. Hall, in particular, finds the key to the gospel tradition in Simone's music and brings that quality forward.

Trumpeter Allen Smith, who joins the band for "You Can Have Him, provides a frail instrumental voice that contrasts sharply with Nalley's powerful performance. While the singer injects considerable emotion into this live session, it remains uneven in spots. Her more forceful interpretations, such as "I Put a Spell on You, achieve great success in revealing the heart and soul of Nina Simone, while several other tracks move mechanically, with a tired demeanor.


Track Listing: My Baby Just Cares for Me; In the Evening by the Moonlight; See-Line Woman; You Can Have Him; I Put a Spell On You; House of the Rising Sun; Trouble in Mind; Mississippi Goddamn; I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to be Free; Extro.

Personnel: Kim Nalley: vocals; Greg Skaff: guitar; Allen Smith: trumpet; Tammy Hall: piano; Michael Zisman: bass; Kent Bryson: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: CE Jazz & Blues/City Hall Records | Style: Vocal


Shop

More Articles

Read Northern Adventures CD/LP/Track Review Northern Adventures
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 28, 2017
Read Collider CD/LP/Track Review Collider
by John Sharpe
Published: February 28, 2017
Read Eos CD/LP/Track Review Eos
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 28, 2017
Read More Than This CD/LP/Track Review More Than This
by Henning Bolte
Published: February 28, 2017
Read Road to Forever CD/LP/Track Review Road to Forever
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Avenida Graham CD/LP/Track Review Avenida Graham
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 27, 2017
Read "Afternoon In Paris" CD/LP/Track Review Afternoon In Paris
by Chris Mosey
Published: June 16, 2016
Read "Twin Talk" CD/LP/Track Review Twin Talk
by Mark F. Turner
Published: September 19, 2016
Read "La vie commence ici" CD/LP/Track Review La vie commence ici
by Tyran Grillo
Published: April 20, 2016
Read "R Train On The D Line" CD/LP/Track Review R Train On The D Line
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 10, 2016
Read "Motion" CD/LP/Track Review Motion
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 11, 2016
Read "Furiously Dreaming" CD/LP/Track Review Furiously Dreaming
by Dave Wayne
Published: July 1, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!