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Jazz - Released January 1, 2012 | Decca (UMO)

Hi-Res Distinctions Hi-Res Audio - Sélection JAZZ NEWS - Sélectionné par Ecoutez Voir
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Jazz - Released June 1, 2015 | Decca (UMO)

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Sélection JAZZ NEWS
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Jazz - Released June 1, 2015 | Decca (UMO)

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Sélection JAZZ NEWS
On 2012's The Absence, Melody Gardot made her first shift away from the jazz-tinged ballads that drew such heavy comparisons to Norah Jones and Madeleine Peyroux. Lushly orchestrated, it was chock-full of songs inspired by Brazilian, Latin, and French forms. On Currency of Man, Gardot takes on a rootsier sound, embracing West Coast soul, funk, gospel, and pop from the early '70s as the backdrop for these songs. It is not only different musically, but lyrically. This is a less "personal" record; its songs were deeply influenced by the people she encountered in L.A., many of them street denizens. She tells their stories and reflects on themes of social justice. It's wide angle. Produced by Larry Klein, the cast includes members of her band, crack session players -- guitarist Dean Parks, drummer Vinnie Colaiuta, Larry Goldings, the Waters Sisters, et al. -- and strings and horns. The title track is a funky blues with a rumbling bassline, dramatic strings (à la Motown) and fat horns. Gardot uses the lens of Sam Cooke to testify to the inevitability of change: "We all hopin’ for the day that the powers see abdication and run/Said it gonna come…." First single "Preacherman" is similar, employing a wrangling, smoldering blues that indicts racism in the 20st century by referring to the violent death of Emmett Till, a catalyst in the then-emergent Civil Rights movement. A driving B-3, saxophone, and menacing lead guitar ratchet up the tension to explosive. A gospel chorus mournfully affirms Gardot's vocal as a harmonica moans in the background. "Morning Sun" and closer "Once I Was Loved" are tender ballads that emerge from simple, hymn-like themes and quietly resonant with conviction. "Same to You" evokes the spirit of Dusty Springfield atop the punchy horns from her Memphis period, albeit with a West Coast sheen. The nylon-string guitar in "Don't Misunderstand" recalls Bill Withers' earthy funkiness. The song's a groover, but it's also a warning to a possessive lover. "Don't Talk" uses spooky polyrhythms (à la Tom Waits) as brooding, spacy slide guitars, B-3, and backing singers slice through forbidding blues under Gardot's voice. "If Ever I Recall Your Face" is jazzier, a 21st century take on the film noir ballad with glorious strings arranged by Clément Ducol that rise above a ghostly piano. "Bad News" simultaneously looks back at L.A.'s Central Avenue and burlesque scenes. It's a jazz-blues with a sauntering horn section, snaky electric guitar, and squawking saxophone solo. Vocally, Gardot is stronger than ever here, her instrument is bigger and fuller yet it retains that spectral smokiness that is her trademark. Currency of Man is a further step away from the lithe, winsome pop-jazz that garnered her notice initially, and it's a welcome one. ~ Thom Jurek
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2009 | Decca

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Vocal Jazz - Released February 9, 2018 | Decca (UMO)

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In four albums, Worrisome Heart (2008), My One And Only Thrill (2009), The Absence (2012) and Currency Of Man (2015), Melody Gardot has managed to sneak in between Diana Krall and Norah Jones to also find her place in the selective club of the female singers that are “a bit jazzy but not too much”, this oneiric cast that was so popular during the 50s, and in which she soon made the singularity of her very sensual voice resonate. A voice that she ceaselessly took touring to locations all over the world, and multiple times over at that. And so, there are enough recordings in the cellar to release a live album. However, live discs are rarely a must. There is often something missing, this small impalpable thing, that only those present that night will have kept inside of them… This Live In Europe from Melody Gardot is lucky to have kept, precisely, this “small thing”… The American has probably meticulously built it (apparently, she has listened to more than 300 recordings before making her decision!) by avoiding the true-false best of. “Someday, someone told me, ‘never look back, because there’s no way you’re going back’, she says. It’s nicely said, but if you don’t look back sometimes, it’s hard to see that time is on the verge of catching up to you. We all need to quickly look back into the rear-view mirror from time to time in order to adjust our trajectory. This disc is precisely that, the rear-view mirror of a 1963 Corvette, a postcard of our touring all over Europe. We spent most of our time on the road these last few years, and we’ve taken advantage of this trip to not only get around and get some fresh air but also to try, as much as possible, to get rid of the rules and create something exciting. I’ve been dreaming for years of releasing a live album like this one.” This desire can be felt in every moment of this disc comprised of titles recorded in Paris, Vienna, Bergen, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Barcelona, Lisbon, Zurich and London. Whether she performs her hits Baby I'm A Fool and My One And Only Thrill or covers the classic Over The Rainbow, Melody Gardot offers up a different point of view, but it’s always an open performance. To help her in her introspective trip that is constantly shifting, she is surrounded by her impeccable musicians, discreet but decisive. Drummer Charles Staab, saxophonist Irwin Hall and bass player Sami Minaie are completely in tune with her singing, like some kind of thin hand that you take and only let go of after the last note. Finally, there is this album cover which will lead to extensive press coverage… or not. © MD/Qobuz
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Vocal Jazz - Released January 1, 2007 | Decca (UMO)

Melody Gardot's debut recording, released in 2006, came two years after she suffered a near fatal automobile accident, the differently able Gardot triumphing in accomplishing what many others, including her, could only dream of. This project has her singing and playing guitar and a little piano, but more so presenting this project of all original material. Gardot has an interesting personal story, but even more intriguing music that straddles the line between lounge jazz, folk, and cowgirl songs. She's part sophisticated chanteuse, college sophomore, and down-home girl next door. Her innocence, sweetness, and light are very alluring, much like the persona of tragic songbirds Eva Cassidy and Nancy LaMott. Feel empathy for Gardot, but don't patronize her -- she's the real deal much more that many of her over-hyped peers. "Quiet Fire" is definitely her signature tune, as it speaks volumes of where her soul is at, in a jazz/blues mode, yearning for true love. The title track follows a similar tack, a slow, sweet, sentimental slinky blues that will melt your heart. A finger-snapping "Goodnite" leaves you wanting that night to continue, but also exudes a hope that permeates the entire recording. She might be a bit down on men during the nonplussed "All That I Need Is Love," but her subdued optimism glows cool. "Sweet Memory" might possibly parallel Feist or perhaps KT Tunstall in a rural country mode, while "Gone" is clearly folkish, and the slow "Some Lessons" expresses a contemporary Nashville precept. The laid-back music behind Gardot is basically acoustic, incorporating hip jazz instrumentation, especially the trumpet of Patrick Hughes and occasional organ, Wurlitzer, or Fender Rhodes from Joel Bryant, but with twists including violin, lap steel, and Dobro. The concise nature of this recording and these tunes perfectly reflects the realization that life is precious, every moment counts, and satisfaction is fleeting. Likely to be placed in the Norah Jones/Nellie McKay/Madeleine Peyroux pseudo jazz/pop sweepstakes, Gardot offers something decidedly more authentic and genuine. She's one-upped them all out of the gate. ~ Michael G. Nastos
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2009 | Universal Music Division Classics Jazz

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Jazz - Released February 9, 2018 | Decca (UMO)

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Pop - Released January 1, 2012 | Decca (UMO)

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If Melody Gardot's 2009 sophomore effort, My One and Only Thrill, sustained the sultry, atmospheric vibe of her critically acclaimed 2006 debut, her 2012 follow-up, The Absence, is a bit of a creative departure for the vocalist. Apparently inspired by her world travels, and specifically by a trip that brought her to the desert around the city of Marrakech, the album moves her away from smoky, small-group jazz and into a bright, if still bedroom-eyed, rhythmically exotic sound. Produced by guitarist/composer Heitor Pereira, the album is a lush, somewhat orchestral album that finds Gardot delving into various Brazilian, Spanish, and African-influenced sounds -- including bits of samba, tango, bossa nova, and calypso -- that evince her global journey. However, rather than simply making a standards album, Gardot continues her all-original approach, offering up new literate and passionately delivered compositions that bring to mind the work of such similarly inclined artists as Antonio Carlos Jobim, Paul Simon, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, and others. Although there are a few name musicians who help add spice to Gardot's musical caravan here, including percussionist Paulinho Da Costa, drummer Peter Erskine, and bassist John Leftwich, primarily it is still Gardot's burnished and yearning vocal style that takes the helm on these tracks. ~ Matt Collar
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Jazz - Released July 22, 2016 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released June 1, 2015 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released August 19, 2015 | Decca (UMO)

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Pop - Released November 4, 2016 | Universal Music Division Decca Records France

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Jazz - Released August 19, 2016 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2009 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released June 1, 2015 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2007 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2008 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released July 22, 2016 | Decca (UMO)

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Jazz - Released May 25, 2015 | Decca (UMO)

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Melody Gardot in the magazine
  • The Qobuz Minute #38
    The Qobuz Minute #38 Presented by Barry Moore, The Qobuz Minute sweeps you away to the 4 corners of the musical universe to bring you an eclectic mix of today's brightest talents. Jazz, Electro, Classical, World music ...
  • Video interview with Melody Gardot
    Video interview with Melody Gardot We met with the American singer as she releases her fourth album Currency Of Man