Albums

£6.39

Vocal Jazz - Released January 29, 1900 | PnR

£6.39

Vocal Jazz - Released January 30, 1900 | CoolNote

£7.99

Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1910 | Candid Productions

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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1953 | El Records

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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1956 | Clef Records

£10.99
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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1957 | Verve

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1957 | Commodore

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Vocal Jazz - Released May 26, 1959 | Poppydisc

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Vocal Jazz - Released August 22, 1966 | Sähkö Recordings

Booklet
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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1988 | RCA Bluebird

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Carmen McRae, a good friend of Thelonious Monk, sang 13 of his songs (two of which are also heard in different live versions) on this memorable project. Half of the lyrics are by Jon Hendricks, while the remainder were written by Abbey Lincoln ("Blue Monk"), Bernie Hanighen, Sally Swisher, or Mike Ferro. On all but the two concert performances, McRae is assisted by tenor saxophonist Clifford Jordan, pianist Eric Gunnison, bassist George Mraz, and drummer Al Foster; Mraz's solos are particularly impressive, although everyone is in sensitive form. The live recordings give listeners two more chances to acknowledge the uniqueness of tenor saxophonist Charlie Rouse's tone. As for McRae, her phrasing has rarely sounded better than on this classic set, and it is a particular pleasure to hear her interpret the intelligent lyrics and unusual melodies. "Dear Ruby" ("Ruby, My Dear") and "Listen to Monk" ("Rhythm-A-Ning") are among the high points of the essential and very delightful CD. An inspired idea and one of the best recordings of Carmen McRae's career. ~ Scott Yanow
£11.49

Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1988 | Parlophone Catalogue

This CD will always be remembered for including Bobby McFerrin's surprise hit "Don't Worry, Be Happy." Actually, overall, this album is not quite up to the level of his previous two, for instead of taking unaccompanied vocals, the remarkable singer overdubbed his voice many times, which reduces the miraculous nature of his talents. However, McFerrin's renditions of "Drive My Car," "Drive," and "Sunshine of Your Love" (the program is quite diverse), plus the catchy "Don't Worry," are generally unique and worth hearing. ~ Scott Yanow
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Vocal Jazz - Released October 24, 1990 | RCA Victor

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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1991 | DRG Records

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Vocal Jazz - Released May 13, 1991 | Blue Note Records

Nat King Cole's collaborations with the Count Basie Orchestra and the Stan Kenton Orchestra (all of which are included on this CD) found him mostly sticking to singing but enjoying the jazz-oriented backgrounds. He first met up with Kenton in 1950, recording the memorable "Orange Colored Sky" and starring on piano during the instrumental "Jambo." They had a reunion in 1960-1961, cutting a remake of "Orange Colored Sky" and two more poppish songs. The matchup with Basie showcased Cole purely as a singer in 1958; Gerald Wiggins took Basie's place at the keyboards. One of Cole's better vocal sessions, he is in top form on a variety of standards (particularly on "The Late, Late Show" and "Welcome to the Club"); pity he did not sit in with the band on piano. This CD is recommended for its rare examples of Nat King Cole as a big-band singer. ~ Scott Yanow
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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1992 | September

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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1995 | DRG Records

Sylvia Syms was nearly 65 when she performed this concert and she knew she sounded her age, joking about it several times during the concert. However that makes little difference for the late singer's touching interpretations of Johnny Mercer's lyrics (and her verbal introductions to each song) are often definitive, making this one of her finest recordings. Trumpeter Joe Newman and Al Cohn on tenor (both of whom actually had no opportunity to rehearse with Syms) take occasional solos and the rhythm section (which includes guitarist Gene Bertoncini) keeps the music jazz-oriented although Syms was really closer to being a cabaret singer. One comes away from this previously unreleased program (performed at one of Jack Kleinsinger's "Highlights in Jazz" concerts) greatly appreciating the talents of both Johnny Mercer and the sorely missed Sylvia Syms. ~ Scott Yanow
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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 1995 | CoolNote

£8.49

Vocal Jazz - Released July 18, 1995 | Epic - Associated - Legacy

After an uncharacteristic (for her) four-year hiatus from recording, Nina Simone returned to the fringes of the pop world with Baltimore, the only album she recorded for the CTI label. While it bears some of the musical stylings of the period -- light reggae inflections that hint of Steely Dan's "Haitian Divorce" -- the vocals are unmistakably Simone's. Like many of her albums, the content is wildly uneven; Simone simply covers too much ground and there's too little attention paid to how songs flow together. As a result, a robust torch piano ballad like "Music for Lovers" is followed immediately by one of Simone's more awkward moments, an attempt to keep up with a jaunty rhythm track on a cover of Hall & Oates' "Rich Girl." Still, one must give her credit for always being provocative in her cover song choices, as she clearly scores on the Randy Newman-penned title track and a dramatic reading of Judy Collins' "My Father." Her voice throughout is in fine form, even when she phones it in on the album-closing traditional gospel tunes, but arranger David Matthews is a mismatch for her: He blows the arrangements with excessive string overlays and needlessly blaring background vocals. Simone herself all but disavowed the album shortly after its release, testament to her eternally contrarian, iconic nature. Despite her misgivings, though, Baltimore is an occasionally spellbinding if erratic album, a challenging and worthwhile listen for people ready to dip into the lesser-known entries in Nina Simone's vast catalog. ~ Joseph McCombs
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Vocal Jazz - Released March 15, 1997 | HighNote Records

On The Melody Lingers On, Etta Jones pays tribute to ten departed members of show business, with one song apiece saluting Phyllis Hyman, Ella Fitzgerald, Nat King Cole, Louis Armstrong, Dinah Washington, Billie Holiday, Sammy Davis, Jr, Billy Eckstine, Alberta Hunter and Sarah Vaughan. The singer does not attempt to emulate any of these greats, and instead sings in her own soulful bluesy style. As usual, Houston Person's tenor is a strong asset while the backup group also features spots for violinist Tom Aalf and pianist Dick Morgan. Fine music. ~ Scott Yanow
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Vocal Jazz - Released May 15, 1997 | HighNote Records

Genre

Vocal Jazz in the magazine