Posts Tagged ‘Pablo’

Sarah Vaughan: Sophisticated Lady – The Duke Ellington Songbook Collection

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

SarahVaughn_Sophisticated Lady1979-80 sessions with six previously unreleased tracks

This 2-CD set collects the twenty-one tracks originally released in 1979/80 on the Duke Ellington Song Book One and Two, and adds six contemporaneous masters that are now being released for the first time. The track list has been reordered to follow the chronological progress of the underlying recording sessions, with the six unreleased arrangements by Benny Carter kicking off the set. All six were re-recorded with new Billy Byers arrangements for the released albums, giving listeners a rare opportunity to hear how an arrangement affects a vocalist’s choices, and how the vocal and backing can form very different conversations on the same material. The sessions feature fine performances from a number of jazz luminaries, including J.J. Johnson, Zoot Sims, JoePass, Grady Tate, Bucky Pizzarelli, PeeWee Crayton and Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson, but the light shone most brightly on a resurgent Sarah Vaughan, whose run in the ’70s had led her to Pablo and a series of superb late-career releases. Vaughan’s performances are thoughtful and controlled, hanging emotion on every syllable. The musicians take their cues from Vaughan, adding tasteful accompaniment and fluid solos that echo her mood. This set is a great way to hear Vaughan at the height of her late-career powers, as well as a superb take on the Ellington catalog. [©2014 Hyperbolium]