Starting and ending with Hoagy Carmichael / Ned Washington‘s composition ‘The nearness of you’, we have mixed 18 ‘Old Fashion and Mellow Jazz‘ tunes around the theme of ‘Hoagy Carmichael / Ned Washington‘. It has Vanya Borges, Mary Stallings, Peggy Lee, Archie Shepp and many more.
Archie Shepp: He grew up in Philadelphia, studied piano and saxophone and attended high school in Germantown; he went to college, became involved with theatre, met writers and poets, among them, Leroy Jones and wrote: «The Communist», an allegorical play about the situation of black Americans. In the late fifties, Archie Shepp also met the most radical musicians of the time: Lee Morgan, Bobby Timmons, Jimmy Garrison, Ted Curson, Beaver Harris … his political consciousness found an expression in plays and theatrical productions which barely allowed him to make a living. In the beginning sixties he met Cecil Taylor and did two recordings with him which were determining.
Johnny Hodges @allmusic : Possessor of the most beautiful tone ever heard in jazz, altoist Johnny Hodges formed his style early on and had little reason to change it through the decades. Although he could stomp with the best swing players and was masterful on the blues, Hodges’ luscious playing on ballads has never been topped. He played drums and piano early on before switching to soprano sax when he was 14.
Mary Stallings @MAxJazz : “Stallings sounds like Carmen McRae with some Dinah Washington sass thrown in. Stallings doesn’t flit around or complicate her singing with oblique swirls and curlicues like many younger jazz singers. She stays closer to the blues, laying down the ballad ‘Sunday Kind of Love’ with fine, feminine ardor.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)
Kitty Lester @Oldies.com : Revoyda Frierson, 16 August 1934, Hope, Arkansas, USA. Ketty Lester began her singing career on completing a music course at San Francisco State College. A residency at the city’s Purple Onion club was followed by a successful tour of Europe before she joined band leader Cab Calloway’s revue. Later domiciled in New York, Lester’s popular nightclub act engendered a recording contract, of which ‘Love Letters’ was the first fruit.
Nossa Alma Canta : Nossa Alma Canta’s sound reinterprets modern bossa nova with the added touches of electronic, jazz and acoustic aspets. In this way, they bring a unique feel to a traditional and hystoric genre.They show new ways to blendgrooves, loops, samples and intruments together into one keeping its natural flow.Nossa Alma Canta is the name of the band project born in 1998 in Venice (Italy). it is the result of the meeting between people that love bossanova music and brasilian culture, that tried to make music starting from this DNA.During all these years we developed our language, and our style, without compromise, selfproducing and experimenting new way of making music.
Frank Chacksfield @RFSOC : Chacksfield was also a very good composer with a large number of titles to his credit, sometimes using pseudonyms such as Martino Paticano and Roger Senicourt. Among his better-known pieces are: “Firecracker”, “Cuban Boy”, “Candid Snap”, “Summer Serenade”, “Innishannon Serenade”, “Bossa For Bess”, “Autumn Island”, “Rosella”, “Medway Magic” (commissioned by the BBC), “Hop Scotch Hop”, “Blue Train” and many more.
Kay Starr : During her time with Charlie Barnet, Kay recorded several V-Discs with the orchestra, which were distributed to the U.S. Armed Forces. In addition to this, she also recorded five sides on the Decca label with Barnet, most notably a bluesy rendition of “Share Croppin’ Blues,” which brought her both critical acclaim and recognition. Unfortunately, Kay’s association with the Barnet Orchestra ended abruptly in 1945 when she caught pneumonia and collapsed during an Army camp show. Upon recovering she realized she had lost her voice, and rather than risk a surgical operation which may have altered her entire singing style, she treated her vocal cords and refrained from speaking – let alone singing – for six months.
Miki Howard : Born in 1962 in Chicago, Illinois, Alicia Michelle “Miki” Howard was the daughter of two well-known gospel singers. Her father, Clay Graham, sang with the Pilgrim Jubiliees and her mother, Josephine Howard, was a member of the Caravans, a group that would eventually be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. During her childhood in Chicago and Detroit, Howard met some of the best singers of the day when they visited her family. “It was nothing for me to see James Cleveland, Billy Preston, and Fats Domino in my house,” she said. “I was surrounded by music every day, so I knew I wanted to sing professionally someday.” Among Howard’s earliest influences were family friends Dinah Washington–to whom she would later be compared–and Aretha Franklin. Howard also counted Nina Simone, Shirley Bassey, Lena Horne, and Judy Garland among her favorite vocalists.