|Flirting With Disaster|
Lorraine Feather — Flirting With Disaster (August 7, 2015) • Sofistikované aranžmá a prvotřídní muzikálnost na této fajnové a příjemné desce. • Lorraine Feather’s first album of love songs is an intelligent, well–crafted record.
• Lorraine Feather, a native of New York City who grew up in Los Angeles, is the daughter of jazz critic Leonard Feather and his wife, Jane (a professional singer), while jazz legend Billie Holiday was her godmother. Exposed to a variety of music in her household, such a career almost seemed to be her destiny, though her parents neither pushed nor discouraged her.
• Stunning ... tricky inner rhymes, offbeat stories ... astonishing vocal dexterity. — Don Heckman, The Los Angeles Times
• Lorraine Feather is easily one of the most creative lyricists of her generation. — Ken Dryden, All Music GuideBorn: September 10, 1948 in New York, NY
Also known as: Billie Jane Lee Lorraine Feather
Location: San Juan Islands, WA
Album release: August 7, 2015
Record Label: Jazzed Media
01. Flirting with Disaster 5:34
02. Feels Like Snow 4:47
03. I’d Be Down with That 5:56
04. Off–Center 6:45
05. Be My Muse 5:17
06. Later 5:05
07. The Last Wave 4:01
08. Disastrous Consequences 4:28
09. Big–Time 6:26
10. Wait for It 5:27
11. The Staircase 6:19
• Russell Ferrante: piano (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8), arranger (2, 3, 8);
• Shelly Berg: piano (5, 11), arranger (5, 11);
• Dave Grusin: piano (9, 10), arranger (9, 10);
• Michael Valerio: bass (1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 10);
• Grant Geissman: (1, 9, 10);
• Eddie Arkin: guitar (4, 6), arranger (1, 4, 6, 7);
• Michael Shapiro: drums/percussion (1, 2, 6, 9, 10);
• Gregg Field: drums (4, 5);
• Carlos Del Rosario: percussion (10);
• Charles Bisharat: violin (1, 4, 5, 8, 11);
• Yutaka Yokokura: additional vocals (2).
• Produced by Lorraine Feather, Carlos Del Rosario, Geoff Gillette, and Eddie Arkin
• Lyrics and vocals by Lorraine Feather
• Music by Eddie Arkin, Shelly Berg, Russell Ferrante, and Dave Grusin
• Piano: Russell Ferrante, Shelly Berg, Dave Grusin; bass: Michael Valerio; drums: Michael Shapiro, Gregg Field; guitar: Grant Geissman, Eddie Arkin; violin: Charles Bisharat
• Cover, graphics and booklet design: Michael Ticcino
• Photography: Mikel Healey
• Publicist: Michael Bloom
• Radio promotion: Michael CarlsonDescription:
• The release of a new Lorraine Feather recording consistently brings a sense of excitement and delicious anticipation. What does this gifted singer–lyricist who, like a figure–ground illustration simultaneously brilliant at both, have in store for us? More than likely, if she's true to her own Muse, I'd suppose it's going to be a sublime rendering of relationship–themed, thoughtfully poetic, yet sparkling verbiage that's delivered paired with highly stylized and impeccably–performed music. In the case of Flirting with Disaster the supposition is dead–on.
• Working once again with ace composers–collaborators Eddie Arkin, Russell Ferrante, Dave Grusin, Shelly Berg and a terrific rhythm section, Feather settles into eleven emotion–stimulating original renderings. There's no falling back on the faux security of GAS material for this high–wire artist. Like a Wallenda (would you believe she actually incorporates that surname in one line?), she works sans net, fearless and supremely confident about what she's offering, risks be damned.
• Although there's an adequate mix, the fare is predominantly slower, thoughtful, and for the most part, artful and Impressionistic ("Feels Like Snow," "The Last Wave," "Wait for It"). The compositional elements are melodically unique and provide Feather ample opportunity to demo her extraordinary ability to color her lyrics. She has superior vocal chops, impeccable diction, and an innate poetic sense of phrasing. Even the hip–hoppity "I'd Be Down with That" demos her versatility. Her overdubbing is exact ("Be My Muse") and is incorporated judiciously. As lyricist, Feather is pure emotion and wit, splattering tons of "touches," "hands," "hearts" and more across her offerings. She can milk a phrase with a sly glee that tickles interest and provides a tease of what might be coming next. Her lines never disappoint.
REVIEW, Carol Banks Weber
• Fans of Lorraine Feather have been dying to hear her next album, ever since they fell head over heels for her previous, Grammy–nominated albums, Attachments (2014) and Tales Of The Unusual (2013). The jazz vocalist and lyricist who’s a combination of Mystery Theater and the female equivalent of O. Henry will release the first comprehensive album of original, romantic love songs on August 7 (Jazzed Media). Love and romance have always played some role in Feather’s original, weirdly endearing, awkwardly real, music, but usually in the context of extenuating circumstances, unusual affairs that have gone awry, a play on star–crossed lovers — sandwiched between other tales.
• ‘This is the first of my albums to be made up wholly of romantic love songs,’ Feather explained in the album credits. ‘The songs that my collaborators and I wrote, emphasize the risk that goes along with giving your heart away. “Any time you fall in love, you’re flirting with disaster.”’
• Feather added yesterday that ‘not all the stories lead to disaster but some do.’
• Feather regroups with her favorite musical collaborators for Flirting With Disaster, bringing back Yellowjackets founder Russell Ferrante, Shelly Berg, Eddie Arkin, and Dave Grusin on her compositions. She lyricized Grusin’s 1980s composition, “Bossa Baroque,” with the pianist adding a new counter–melody in the opening. ‘Wait For It’ is their acoustic, lyrical version with ‘something of a Brazil ’66 vibe,’ and quite breathtaking — a kind of new jazz ballet resting on the endless, infinite peaks.
• Flirting With Disaster contains the same clever, in–depth short–story narratives with a twist, a breathy interlude, and eerie vocal sweeps. Feather’s known for her endlessly entertaining, tight hairpin lyrical turns, and surprising emotional cliffhangers that leave listeners both devastated and rejuvenated.
• The arrangements are never ordinary, always serving the emotional, almost celestial outcast of the tidy, lyrical story. Her collaborators know just what she’s listening for and write to her vocal dexterity and natural resistance to embarrassing sentiment for sentiment’s sake. Lorraine Feather chose well. This is another outstanding, possible Grammy contender. — Carol Banks Weber, examiner.comREVIEW — Ken Dryden, All Music
• Lorraine Feather is easily one of the most creative lyricists of her generation, and since earning a Grammy nomination for her 2010 CD Ages, the vocalist has gained greater attention from writers who had previously overlooked her contributions. Every one of her CDs is a treat, full of surprising, often humorous song topics and devoid of predictable Moon/June assembly line lyrics, while Feather’s skills as an actress and her infectious, versatile voice add to her appeal.Tales of the Unusual is no exception, with stories that at times test one’s imagination and occasionally flirt with a creepy air. Most of the musicians appearing on Tales of the Unusual have worked with Feather on her earlier recordings, with Russell Ferrante and Shelly Berg alternating on piano. ‘Indiana Lana’ is her vocal setting of Duke Ellington’s ‘Jubilee Stomp,’ first recorded for her CD Dooji Wooji. This new version is a duet, with Feather’s lively vocal romp about the speedy female runner accompanied by Berg, who shows off his masterful stride chops. • The mysterious ‘Out There’ keeps revealing hidden facets as Feather’s lyric unfolds, as does Berg’s captivating tune. Her haunting ‘I Took Your Hand’ (which adds a lyric to Italian jazz pianist Enrico Pieranunzi’s ‘Fellini’s Waltz’) is a magical ballad with a shimmering backdrop featuring violinist Charles Bisharat’s elegant playing. Ferrante begins ‘The Hole in the Map’ with an eerie flavor, though it quickly takes a comic turn as Feather shares her tale of exploring the Amazon. ‘Get a Room’ is a hilarious swinger that would be a choice song for a romantic comedy. Her tale describes two lovers so taken with one another that everyone they encounter makes the obvious suggestion, while the solos by Berg, guitarist Mike Miller, and Bisharat add to its playfulness. Only Feather can pen a song about a street person writing a love letter on the sidewalk in chalk, as she does in ‘Sweet Miriam,’ while Eddie Arkin’s music is the perfect blend of jaunty nostalgia from the 1920s with Michael Valerio’s delicious arco bass underneath her mesmerizing vocal. Tales of the Unusual demonstrates that Lorraine Feather is not content to settle into a comfort zone; instead, she continues to grow as a lyricist and singer as she tackles new musical challenges with her collaborators. © 3755 x 5616 Credit: Mikel Healey
Artist Biography by Ken Dryden
• Lorraine Feather, a native of New York City who grew up in Los Angeles, is the daughter of jazz critic Leonard Feather and his wife, Jane (a professional singer), while jazz legend Billie Holiday was her godmother. Exposed to a variety of music in her household, such a career almost seemed to be her destiny, though her parents neither pushed nor discouraged her. After finishing school, Feather returned to Manhattan to pursue acting, doing a bit of singing to pay the bills, including cabaret. She was in the Broadway and touring casts of Jesus Christ Superstar and later sang backup for Grand Funk Railroad and Petula Clark.
• Open to many musical interests, Feather began focusing on jazz in the late '70s, making her debut on an album by pianist Joanne Grauer and recording her first jazz LP for Concord (Sweet Lorraine) in 1978. In the 1990s, Feather became a first–rate jazz singer as a member of the vocal group Full Swing, developing her expressive contralto to capture the essence of every song. She began regularly contributing lyrics to their repertoire, but her writing career blossomed when she began recording on her own. • Her ability to write lyrics to challenging, often obscure instrumentals by Fats Waller and Duke Ellington, while also collaborating with several excellent, currently active songwriters, has impressed many jazz critics. Humor is especially her strong suit ("Imaginary Guy," "You're Outa Here," "Antarctica," and "Indiana Lana"), though her ballads, swing vehicles, and pop songs also merit strong praise.
• Feather has also written extensively for television (she has earned seven Emmy nominations) and movie soundtracks, including The Jungle Book 2 and Julie Andrews' vocal comeback in The Princess Diaries 2. Opera star Jessye Norman performed one of her songs ("Faster, Higher, Stronger") at the opening of the 1996 Olympics.
By General Jabbo on August 9, 2015 3:04 PM |
By NICHOLAS F. MONDELLO, Published: August 24, 2015 | SCORE: *****
|Flirting With Disaster|