Bruce Von Stiers
Jenny Davis is a jazz vocalist whose music I've reviewed before. I wrote that Jenny's vocals were sweet, yet sexy and sultry at the same time. Even though I wrote those words quite some time ago, I still stand by them. Jenny still has the same level of terrific vocals from years back, maybe even better.
Earlier this year Jenny released a new album. The title of the album is Rearranged.
Not only is Jenny a talented vocalist, she is also a composer and bandleader. There are twelve songs on Rearranged and Jenny wrote nine of them. Of the other three songs, Jenny did great arrangements of them.
I already mentioned that there are twelve songs on Rearranged. The album has a play time of fifty-five minutes. It was produced by Jenny and JohnPaul Beattie. Among his other talents, Beattie is an adjunct professor and sound engineer at the University of the Arts. The album was released by the Three Penny Records label.
Jenny does all of the lead vocals on Rearranged. She has several talented musicians backing her vocals. The Jovino Santos Neto Trio helps out. They are Jovino Santos Neto on piano, Chuck Deardorf on bass and Jeff Busch on drums.
Other musicians helping out are Kurt Festinger on tenor sax, while Mark Taylor plays alto sax. The flugelhorn music on the album is done by Dmitri Matheny. Heather Bentley plays the viola and violin. And David Lange plays the accordion.
There is a special sax section for the album called the Yeoman Warders Sax Quartet. They are Kate Olsen on soprano, Cynthia Mullis on tenor, Jim Dejoie on baritone and, again, Mark Taylor on alto. This group is featured in one song on the album.
There are some additional vocals on the album. They are done by Lorrie Ruiz and Vanessa Littrell.
A bossa nova styled song, Aceptar, opens the album. It is a smooth and easy song, with both great solos for the sax and piano.
Next up is a smile effecting rendition of the Herbie Hancock song, And What If I Don't. There is a cool flugelhorn solo in the song.
Come With Me is a terrific ballad with harmonizing vocals from Vanessa Littrell. A solid bass solo is in the bridge for the song. The song features the Jovino Santos Netro Trio.
The title track, Rearranged, has some great piano throughout it. The song is about trying to find a change of heart for a person who struggles with anger against people who are haters. And not only change the person but those who are doing the hating. The vocals are smooth and gentle, even though the message is a bit stronger.
Yeomen Warders is the first instrumental that Jenny has written. Inspired by the works of John Coltrane the Charles Mingus Big Band and others, the song is a three part suite for a jazz saxophone quartet. That is where the Yeoman Warders Sax Quartet comes in. They provide a terrific performance. Of course, I am partial to saxophone music.
There is a nice flugelhorn solo for the song Invitation. Jenny offers a nice rendition of the Bronislau Kaper classic, joining others such as Rosemary Clooney, Dinah Washington and Tony Bennett who've recorded the song.
Saying Yes is a fun, head bopping tune. If she says no to him, she's saying yes to her heart, not getting it broke again. The song has some nice accompanying vocals by Lorrie Ruiz. And there are cool piano and sax solos in the song.
Calling You is a song from the film Bagdad Café. It was written by Bob Telson. Both he and Jevetta Steele have recorded versions of the song. And Celine Dion has performed it on tour and television specials. Having listened to Celine's, I actually prefer Jenny's rendition of the song. And there is a great flugelhorn solo in the song too.
Answer The Call is a light toe tapper with some nice string music.
Gemini Tango is just what the title suggests. It is a smile effecting tango piece, tying people's traits to their astrological signs. The song features excellent accordion and piano solos.
Wise Up is another song that Jenny wrote that is strictly instrumental. It is styled somewhat like a classic jazz piece. The song has the sax leading piano, bass and drums at first, then there are several great solos.
The album closes with a string based version of Rearranged. It is a pretty powerful arrangement for the song.
Jenny Davis has recorded a terrific listening experience. Not only are vocals great, the music is excellent. Between Jenny's original compositions and arrangements tailored to her, Rearranged has a nice variety of songs.
Rearranged is on iTunes and amazon and certain streaming platforms.
The Jenny Davis official web site is https://jennydavisjazz.com/ .
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© 2020 Bruce E Von Stiers