For her 34th studio album, Anne Murray recorded a set of duets with many of her favorite female singers, from Nelly Furtado to Sarah Brightman. There are a number of country duet partners here, such as Shania Twain, Emmylou Harris, and Martina McBride, but there are even more pop-oriented women singing with Murray, encompassing the likes of Celtic Woman and Celine Dion. This makes perfect sense, as Murray's always straddled the pop-country fence effortlessly. Her singing on Duets: Friends and Legends is just as effortless. Now in her fifth decade as an active recording artist, her voice hasn't lost a beat, sounding just as pure and clear as it did on 1970s "Snowbird" (done here with a surprisingly relaxed, easy vocal from Brightman, sounding for all the world like a young Olivia Newton-John). The majority of these songs are ones which have been sizeable hits for Murray in the past, most of which work nicely recast as duets, or at least showcases for harmony singing.
A wildly imaginative set of solo works on prepared piano and drum set by Billy Martin (Medeski, Martin and Wood, The Lounge Lizards, Creative Music Studio). Informed by a series of his own visual artworks, Martin recorded 3 impromptu sets of performances at The Herman House Gallery surrounded by his art.
This 15-track set puts together some amazing performances by Billy Eckstine's band from the early '40s when he was leading one of the more intense, smoking bands on the scene. Some of his players during these years included Fats Navarro, Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Dexter Gordon, and Kenny Dorham, just to name a few. The Eckstine band was sophisticated, jumping, and they swung like mad no matter the tune. Here, of course, the emphasis is on Eckstine's vocals, his smooth as silk baritone that could sing a ballad like Duke Ellington's "Sophisticated Lady," or a deep swinging blues by Doc Pomus ("She Got the Blues for Sale"). There's scat, solid jazz balladry, and jumping, tough-hitting blues here. Highly recommended.
Reissue features the latest digital remastering and the high-fidelity SHM-CD format (compatible with standard CD player) and the latest DSD / HR Cutting remastering. Comes with a description. Features the original LP designs. A Touch of Taylor is an album by American jazz pianist Billy Taylor recorded in 1955 for the Prestige label. The album was one of the first 12-inch LPs released by the label.
Wayne Shorter has written a number of landmark jazz compositions that have found favor among fellow jazz musicians, but Mysterious Shorter marks a rare occasion when an entire CD is devoted to his music. Trumpeter Nicholas Payton heads a strong quintet, including saxophonist Bob Belden (who doubles on soprano and tenor saxes, like Shorter, and contributed all of the arrangements), organist Sam Yahel, guitarist John Hart, and drummer Billy Drummond. Since six of the eight songs are from Shorter's early Blue Note CDs prior to his move toward fusion, the substitution of Yahel's laid-back organ for the more striking sound of the piano softens the sound of Belden's charts, giving them a bit more of a mysterious flavor, especially in the brisk, playful setting of "Footprints." Payton is known for his powerful trumpet playing, but displays a quiet lyrical touch in "Teru."