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A sensitive, ballad project, The Best Of Holly Cole compiles selected smoky pearls from her ‘90s albums Yesterday & Today, Blame It On My Youth, Dark Dear Heart, Don’t Smoke In Bed, Temptation and It Happened One Night. Nearly half are slow, romantic numbers, while the others drive steadily with a cool detachment. Pop music sentiment and a touch of country-western charm bring Cole’s heartfelt performances closer to a rather large audience. She’s doing for today’s audience what Billie Holiday, Julie London and Carly Simon have done for earlier generations. The songs come straight from the heart, and Cole’s emphasis is on a lyric message. That she crosses in and out of pop, jazz, country, folk, and cabaret need not get in the way. She’s a unique singer with much to share. This 13-song cross-section representing her best work is an intelligent way to get to know Holly Cole.
Track Listing: Trust in Me; Calling You; God Will; Blame it on My Youth; I Can See Clearly Now; Don
Personnel: Holly Cole- vocals; Aaron Davis- piano, Hammond B-3 organ; Jim Cox- Hammond B-3 organ; David Piltch- string bass, percussion; David Lindley- lap steel guitar; Kevin Breit, Dean Parks- guitar; Anne Bourne- cello; Douglas Perry- viola; Anne Lederman- five-string violin; Mark Kelso- drums; Dougie Bowie- drums, percussion; Iki Levy, Helik Hadar- drums, programming.
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.