Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Sarah Vaughan: The Essential

The CD contains some of her best works of which she employs her big vocal range (soprano to baritone), sweet, sassy voice and excellent signature vibrato (as evident on "Speak Low") on various styles of music. As a Great American Songbook interpreter, her technique is good and musicians treat her as a part of their own due to her creativity in music improvisation and utilisation of her voice as a musical instrument (scat-singing).

Typically most of her songs are of jazz. However, the other variants are:
  1. Doo-wop - All of Me
  2. Oldies - Broken-Hearted Melody
  3. Classical - My Man's Gone Now (Written by Gershwin)
  4. Bossa Nova - Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars (Latin version sung by Astrud Gilberto)
  5. Blues - No Count Blues
This CD is good, especially for starters. Sarah Vaughan is quite a diverse artiste. If you find any of the styles above is good, try getting her CDs, which is of the same genre that you like:
  1. Doo-wop - Count Basie & Sarah Vaughan (collaborative work)
  2. Oldies - *
  3. Classical - Sarah Sings Gershwin
  4. Bossa Nova - I Love Brazil , Copacabana
  5. Blues - *
  6. Swing - Sarah Swings Tivoli, Swingin' Easy
  7. Broadway - Sarah Sings Broadway
  8. Cool Jazz - Crazy and Mixed Up
It should be taken note that, in a quirk of nature, her voice "dropped" in her later years of her career. In the late 70s to 1990, her range increased "downwards" significantly (to the baritone level). At that point of time, her voice becomes less sweeter, but she sounds fuller. At this point of time, her voice has certain deep smoky quality. Her vocal technique is at her best and deserves recommendation, as evident in these albums:
  1. Crazy and Mixed Up - Cool jazz
  2. Send In The Clowns
  3. How Long Has This Been Going On? - The smokey voice is more evident here
The only album that I will not recommend is Sarah Swings The Beatles. The production of the songs will not appeal to listeners who like her singing. The mixing of the music is poor as well.
* Still searching for the appropriate album. Will update once I get it [Songs are present in this album but I have yet to know which album they belong to]

In overall this CD is Highly Recommended for New Listeners of Jazz. Serious Jazz Listeners can opt for more well-defined CDs that I have mentioned.

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