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Reviews: Jane Blackstone ~ Natural Habitat NYC|
Posted on Thursday, August 08, 2002 @ 23:27:34 UTC
Artist: Jane Blackstone
CD: Natural Habitat NYC (Motief Records)
Home: New York City
Quote: "Blackstone's voice can easily hold its own with the best
By Suzanne Glass
Jane Blackstone's CD, Natural Habitat NYC, paints her vocal versatility against
a backdrop of talented jazz musicians, including Sir Roland Hanna's piano on
2 tracks. Blackstone assembled a "wish list" of current and former NYC musician
peers to help her record the CD, on which she hoped to capture the many influences
she has gained as a jazz musician and educator who has traveled the world exploring
different musical cultures.
My favorite tracks on this CD were the two songs Blackstone wrote herself (Room
for Everybody and Once 4U), as appeased to any of the standards or other material
on the disc. The reason why is, I think she finds her own true voice best when
presenting her own material. Although she sounds great on all the songs, the
timing and interpretation on her original songs showcases her voice superbly.
I'd like to see her contribute more songs on the next CD, including some strong
choruses to really showcase her voice.
Of the other tunes, I thought "Mystics", which was written and arranged by sax
player Bob Mover, was a fun mix. Other standouts include Rainbow I See In Your
Eyes, Between the Devil & the Deep Blue Sea, and the last cut, Nothing Like
You/Sometimes I'm Happy.
There's some great performances on this disc, and Blackstone's voice can easily
hold its own with the best of them. She has absorbed pieces of her many influences
- including Shirley Horn, Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Betty Carter, and
Nina Simone - yet somehow I think her own voice is just beginning to emerge.
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