Saturday, December 3, 2016

Andy Scott - Angels (JAZZ LEGACY PRODUCTIONS 2016)

Angels finds Scott collaborating with jazz piano heavyweight Cyrus Chestnut, one of the finest American key-crackers, the two co-writing the title tune. In fact, whereas some jazz singers perform/record many done-to-death standards, Scott ups the ante by writing (or co-writing) nearly all the songs herein—like they say in the movies, this time it is personal.

The opener “Somebody Like You” sets the tone for Angels. Scott swings from the beginning—the band lays down an old school groove and Scott glides in, part starry-eyed romantic, part sophisticate, expressing himself with easy, adjusting to the fickle winds of romance with each syllable. The influence of the classy, jazz-based crooners is there—Nat “King” Cole and Johnny Hartman—but Scott doesn’t attempt to “sound like” them. He’s absorbed their styles and adapted them to his own singular approach, adding a bit of grit, a touch of irreverence, and a lot of heart. 

Scott makes his way down Lonely Avenue, a street of dreams where the blues are kept at bay by “Valium & Soda”—he’s a nightclub philosopher in the manner of Jimmy Scott and Bob Dorough, singing in a sly, worldly drawl. Chestnut’s piano is luminous in a spare, funky manner and Freddie Hendrix’s trumpet provides a sweet balm for Scott’s condition.

01. Somebody Like You 3:01
02. Angels (Always Welcome 'Round Here) 4:19
03. What Magic Is This 4:11
04. Valium & Soda Pop 3:22
05. Haunted House (The Other Side of Blue) 3:25
06. The Things We Leave Behind 4:24
07. Ninety-Nine 5:00
08. Someday You'll Be Sorry 3:22
09. Learning to Fly 5:27
10. Whatcha Gonna Do on Monday 2:33
11. Blowin' Kisses at the Moon 4:09
12. Bye, Bye, Blackbird 3:46
13. Swingtime Lullabye 4:23

ANDY SCOTT – vocals

ABELITA MATEUS – vocals & fender rhodes piano (track 3)
RONELL BEY – vocals  (track 7)
YOTAM SILBERSTEIN – guitars (tracks 1,2,3,7,9,10)  
GREG GISBERT – trumpet (tracks 3 & 5)
FREDDIE HENDRIX – trumpet (track 4)
ANDRES BOIARSKY – tenor sax & clarinet (tracks 4, 5,6,11)
ANNE DRUMMOND – alto flute (tracks 1 & 3)
CAFÉ – percussion  (track 3)
VINCE ECTOR – drums & percussion (tracks 2 & 7)
ROGER SQUITERO – percussion (tracks 3 & 7)
ROSENA HILL JACKSON – background vocals (track 7)
SONNY WILLIAMS – background vocals (track 7)
TONY HEWITT – background vocals (track 7)

Produced by: John Lee
Executive Producer: Lisa Broderick