Despite being completely different singers, there's a lot to connect Gretchen Parlato with the legendary Billie Holiday
. Holiday was a singer with a phrasing deeply rooted in the blues, while Parlato is a jazz singer with the modern influences of R&B and pop music, but what draws them together is the uniqueness of their respective styles. Neither has the greatest vocal range, but the originality and pure feeling of their voices is what has set them apart from any other jazz singer. 75 years ago, nobody sang like Billie Holiday; today, nobody sings like Gretchen Parlato. The Lost And Found
is Parlato's third release, and possesses a more personal feel, with Parlato revealing herself as an accomplished composer. She also contributes lyrics to "Without A Sound," "The Lost And Found," "Henya," the folksy "Still" and Wayne Shorter
's "Juju." Parlato also composed the music and wrote the lyrics for the bossa-influenced "Winter Wind," "Circling," "Better Than" and the funky "How We Love." The Lost And Found
also includes a remix of the title track to Parlato's In a Dream
(ObliqSound, 2009), and pianist Bill Evans
' "Blue In Green," one of the jazzier songs on the album, with lyrics by Meredith D'Ambrosio.
Parlato does wonderful versions of Mary J. Blige's "All That I Can Say" and Simply Red's "Holding Back The Years," two odd selections for a jazz album that reveal her modern and diverse musical influences.
Like any good jazz vocalist, Parlato is more than a singer, she is a musician. Rhythm and melody are just as important as lyrics in Parlato's interpretations. Her distinct, creative and sharp phrasing sounds, at times, like a saxophonist like on "Juju," or in the ostinato lines on "Winter Wind." On a mesmerizing version of Paulinho Da Viola "Alo Alo," Parlato turns into a percussionistcontributing all percussion and vocals on this song and, once again, showing her love for Brazilian music.
With The Lost And Found
, Parlato continues to establish herself as one of the premier jazz singers of the 21th century.
Holding Back The Years; Winter Wind; How We Love; Juju; Still; Better
than; Alo, Alo; Circling; Henya; In a Dream (Remix); All That I Can Say; Me
and You; Blue in Green; The Lost and Found; Without a Sound.
Gretchen Parlato: vocals; Taylor Eigsti: piano; Derrick Hodge, Alan
Hampton: bass; Kendrick Scott: drums; Dayna Stephens: tenor