Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
2

Judy Wexler: What I See

Nicholas F. Mondello By

Sign in to view read count Views
Judy Wexler: What I See When they excavated the world-famous La Brea tar pits in Los Angeles, scientists discovered an other-worldly array of fossilized treasures. Who would have thought that, millennia ago, in the middle of Tinseltown, saber-toothed tigers and mammoths were sashaying down Rodeo Drive? In an analogous way, What I See from Judy Wexler yields surprisingly terrific finds, primarily from material that has been available right in front but overlooked. A very fine vocal talent also surfaces.

With this, her fourth CD, Wexler grabs a handful of these pieces and performs them—with the help of some of L.A.'s finest First-Callers— with esprit, taste and wry humor. Wexler's vocal timbre seems ideal for the range of material here—from ballads to softer rock via broad- ranged selections from John Williams ("The Long Goodbye") to Richie Havens ("Follow"), et al. More restrained than robust, her voice has a minimalist's tinge, vibratoless, clear as virgin spingwater, but always on target pitch and intonation-wise. Although it's not disingenuously cute, there's more Blossom Dearie in her sound and lyric displays than, say, a Kral— Irene or Diana, she with the second "l." The overall sonority fits the unique material to a T.

Props are in order for pianist Jeff Colella's fine arrangements and playing, which frame Wexler's approach well. The solo efforts on the session are as tasty and apropos as she on whom the spotlight shines. No toes are stepped on in these dances. Multi-woodwind ace Bob Sheppard's solos shine bright, as do those of the enormously talented trumpeter, Ron Stout. Slide artist Scott Whitfield brings sweet tea to the garden party blowing on a Satchmo-signed standard ("A Kiss to Build a Dream On"). The rhythm section works the material, well without being intrusive or uninterested.

With a plethora of female vocalists umbilically tied to the Songbook and Ipanema Beach's sandy sounds, Wexler—by way of taking a road less traveled—delivers a refreshing, satisfying musical excavation. Hooray for Hollywood.


Track Listing: Tomorrow Is Another Day; The Moon Is Made of Gold; Convince Me; They Say It’s Spring; A Certain Sadness; The Long Goodbye; Just for Now; Follow; Another Time, Another Place; A Kiss to Build a Dream On; Laughing at Life.

Personnel: Judy Wexler: vocals; Jeff Colella: piano; Larry Koonse: guitar; Chris Colangelo: bass; Steve Hass: drums; Ron Stout: trumpet, flugelhorn; Bob Sheppard: bass clarinet, alto flute; Scott Whitfield: trombone; Billy Hulting: percussion.

Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Jazzed Media | Style: Vocal


Related Video

Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
What I See
What I See
Jazzed Media
2013
buy
Under A Painted Sky
Under A Painted Sky
Jazzed Media
2011
buy
Dreams and Shadows
Dreams and Shadows
Jazzed Media
2009
buy
Dreams & Shadows
Dreams & Shadows
Jazzed Media
2008
buy
Easy On The Heart
Easy On The Heart
Rhombus Records
2005
buy
Sony Holland Sony Holland
vocalist
Abbey Lincoln Abbey Lincoln
vocalist
Carmen McRae Carmen McRae
vocalist
Oliver Nelson Oliver Nelson
saxophone
Amanda Carr Amanda Carr
vocalist
Betty Carter Betty Carter
vocalist
Shirley Horn Shirley Horn
piano
Greta Matassa Greta Matassa
vocalist

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.