Archive for the Hilary KOLE Category

Hilary KOLE – You Are There 2010

Posted in Hilary KOLE, JAZZ on November 30, 2010 by whoisthemonk

Hilary KOLE – You Are There 2010

Jazz

Singer, composer, arranger, pianist – Hilary Kole is unusually well-rounded when compared even to the better singers working today. She utterly fits the description “she’s got it all” – a catch-phrase often lobbed but seldom deserving. After the success of Haunted Heart, her debut small combo recording, lovingly produced by John Pizzarelli, Kole now offers You Are There, an album of duets that is certain to further enhance her reputation as one of today’s finest singers working in jazz. What is truly remarkable is that, despite the presence of such heavyweight partners as Hank Jones, Cedar Walton, Freddy Cole, Kenny Barron, Michel Legrand and Dave Brubeck (and the list does not end there),  Hilary Kole manages to make the recording very much her own, with nary a weak track among this thirteen song paean to love. From the opener, “If I Had You,” performed with the inimitable Hank Jones (indisputably one of the finest vocal accompanists in jazz history), to “All The Way,” with the great Monty Alexander, this hour long recording is a rewarding listen, rich in detail and improving with each successive spin. Sales Points:- Hilary Kole duets with some of the world’s greatest pianists- Guests include Hank Jones, Kenny Barron, Michel Legrand & Dave Brubeck- Thirteen newly-recorded tracks; over an hour of music- Includes “It’s Always You,” a vocal duet  with Freddy Cole- Ms. Kole will tour extensively to support the recording (dates TBA) Media Quotes:”She communicated with warmth and intimacy.  Completely involved in her rich expressiveness, she pulled her listeners into the experience with her.  Songs such as Wilder’s too-rarely heard “Blackberry Winter” and Irving Berlin’s touching “What’ll I Do?” emerged as definitive examples of the rich poetry in American song.”   – Don Heckman, Los Angeles Times (Dec 2009)”In everything Ms. Kole sings, you sense her insistence on getting it right by maintaining a precisely calculated balance between technique and expressiveness. A meticulous perfectionist, Ms. Kole always surrounds herself with the best musicians.”
– Stephen Holden, The New York Times (Feb 2010)
**
With her crystal clear voice and precise phrasing, singer Hilary Kole pulls off the delightful and unique You Are There. This is one of a kind, because eleven different top-of-the-line piano accompanists join her, with two appearing twice.
You Are There’s 13 songs are all ballads, sung passionately, simply, and with no frills. According to the liner notes, most takes were spontaneous, with no charts or rehearsal. Kole’s sense of dynamics is also effective, the way she builds to a climax. The only possible criticism of the CD is that it could have included an up-temp tune or two.
Kole is a regular on the New York jazz scene, with frequent performances at Birdland and other clubs including the Jazz Standard and the Iridium. She attracted great interest in 2008 with her debut, Haunted Heart, also on Justin Time.
All the pianists do their job impeccably. The late Hank Jones is on two cuts—the venerable pop classic by Shapiro, Campbell and Connolly, “If I Had You,” and Burke and Van Heusen’s “But Beautiful.” Three of Van Heusen’s songs are included—certainly a bow to him.
The still very active jazz icon, Dave Brubeck, is also featured two occasions. His own “Strange Meadowlark” is particularly lovely, with Kole doing full justice to the poetic lyrics of Brubeck’s wife, Iola.
Kole also takes Billy Strayhorn’s ultra-romantic “Lush Life” to a lofty level, with pianist Kenny Barron breaking out at the finish with a choice improvisation, paving the way for Kole’s dramatic close. Kole’s rousing version of Stephen Sondheim’s “I Remember,” with pianist Mike Renzi, is another good example of her astute, theatrical style.
In a fitting touch, Michel Legrand joins Kole on his own “How Do You Keep the Music Playing,” while, in a change of pace, pianist/vocalist Freddy Cole comes in with his honey-coated voice for a teasing duo version of Burke and Van Heusen’s “It’s Always You.”
Perhaps the standout here is “All the Way,” the Van Heusen and Cahn song on which many great singers, including Frank Sinatra, have put their stamp. Monty Alexander’s lightly swinging accompaniment spotlights Kole’s fresh interpretation of the lyric.
By Larry Taylor.
**
Hilary Kole- Vocals;
Monty Alexander- Piano (13);
Kenny Barron- Piano (4);
Dave Brubeck- Piano (5, 10);
Alan Broadbent- Piano (11);
Freddy Cole- Vocals and piano (3);
Benny Green- Piano (9);
Hank Jones- Piano (1, 8);
Steve Kuhn- Piano (12);
Michel Legrand- Piano (7);
Mike Renzi- Piano (6);
Cedar Walton- Piano (2).
**
01. If I Had You (With Hank Jones) 3:56
02. Every Time We Say Goodbye (With Cedar Walton) 5:03
03. It’s Always You (With Freddy Cole) 4:54
04. Lush Life (With Kenny Barron) 6:58
05. These Foolish Things (With Dave Brubeck) 4:12
06. I Remember (With Mike Renzi) 4:15
07. How Do You Keep The Music Playing (With Michel Legrand) 4:33
08. But Beautiful (With Hank Jones) 4:38
09. Softly, As In A Morning Sunrise (With Benny Green) 4:12
10. Strange Meadowlark (With Dave Brubeck) 4:18
11. You Are There (With Alan Broadbent) 4:17
12. Two For The Road (With Steve Kuhn) 4:24
13. All The Way (With Monty Alexander) 5:01
**

Continue reading