Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

168

Cheryl Bentyne: The Gershwin Songbook

Larry Taylor By

Sign in to view read count
Cheryl Bentyne's The Gershwin Songbook is among the best vocal albums of 2010. A member of The Manhattan Transfer since 1979, she frequently strikes out on her own to record, and has released eight albums in the past two decades.

Perfecting her talent in vocalese with The Manhattan Transfer, Bentyne performs jazz choruses with a pitch-perfect soprano in the tradition of Annie Ross, by way of Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan. In this set of 15 Gershwin classics, she gets many opportunities to show her vocal dexterity; excelling in all contexts, swinging for sure, and sensitive to every nuance of the lyrics.

Pianist Corey Allen is essential to the album's success. Along with another pianist, Ted Howe, he turns out delightfully creative arrangements that are not "by the book" interpretations.

The guest artists are also big factors in giving the recording its distinctive flavor: impeccable clarinetist Ken Peplowski, who shines throughout; flautist Peter Gordon; and guitarist Larry Koonse, in particular a standout on rhythm guitar.

Appropriate to the Gershwins, things start with Peplowski's clarinet introduction to "Fascinating Rhythm" echoing "Rhapsody in Blue," evolving into a breakneck scat duet with Bentyne before drummer Dave Tull heralds a transition to "I Got Rhythm."After a dazzling cadenza on "Lady Be Good," Peplowski gives a virtuoso display, backed by a romping piano. Bentyne also really shows her straight-ahead jazz chops.

Bentyne is soft and seductive on "I've Got A Crush on You," with Koonse's sensitive solo also prominent. On "Isn't It a Pity," her shimmering voice is counterpoint to the piano and Tull's background vocal, while "Summertime" is a standout arrangement, with its Gil Evans-like background, Bentyne's vocalese merging with Gordon's flute. A surprising version of "The Man I Love," with rhythm guitar and clarinet that could have come from Django Reinhardt's Hot Club de France, is an upbeat joy. Overall, every track on The Gershwin Songbook is a happy discovery.

Track Listing: Fascinating Rhythm/I Got Rhythm; Love Is Here to Stay; Isn't It A Pity; Summertime; A Foggy Day; Lady Be Good; Someone To Watch Over Me; How Long Has This Been Going On; The Man I Love; I've Got A Crush On You; But Not For Me; Let's Call the Whole Thing Off; Nice Work If You Can Get It; S'Wonderful.

Personnel: Cheryl Bentyne: vocals; Corey Allen: piano; Ted Howe: piano; Kevin Axt: bass; Larry Koonse: guitar: Dave Tull: drums, background vocal; Ken Peplowski: clarinet; Peter Gordon: flute; Mark Winkler: vocalist.

Title: The Gershwin Songbook | Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: ArtistShare


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Lattice CD/LP/Track Review Lattice
by John Sharpe
Published: December 14, 2017
Read I Think I’m Going To Eat Dessert CD/LP/Track Review I Think I’m Going To Eat Dessert
by Mark Corroto
Published: December 14, 2017
Read Celebrating William Parker at 65 CD/LP/Track Review Celebrating William Parker at 65
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: December 14, 2017
Read Eternal Life CD/LP/Track Review Eternal Life
by Jerome Wilson
Published: December 14, 2017
Read Baby It's Cold Outside CD/LP/Track Review Baby It's Cold Outside
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 13, 2017
Read Wrong Turns And Dead Ends CD/LP/Track Review Wrong Turns And Dead Ends
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 13, 2017
Read "Runnin' for the Ghost" CD/LP/Track Review Runnin' for the Ghost
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: September 1, 2017
Read "Infância" CD/LP/Track Review Infância
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 3, 2017
Read "Fukushima" CD/LP/Track Review Fukushima
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: November 22, 2017
Read "Meditations on Freedom" CD/LP/Track Review Meditations on Freedom
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 11, 2017
Read "Constant Change 1976-2016" CD/LP/Track Review Constant Change 1976-2016
by John Sharpe
Published: July 19, 2017
Read "Blue Skylight" CD/LP/Track Review Blue Skylight
by Jack Bowers
Published: March 12, 2017

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!