Brandon Sanders - Compton’s Finest

Album of the Week, 02-27-24

Stacey Kent – Summer Me, Winter Me

Release date: November 10, 2023
Label: NAIVE

Summer Me, Winter Me sees Kent weaving her supremely subtle storytelling through a handpicked selection of fan requests which harmoniously blends cherished classics, timeless ‘chanson’ gems, and fresh originals. The exquisite title track, beloved by instrumentalists (Mulgrew Miller, Tony Williams) and vocalists alike (Sarah Vaughan, Frank Sinatra), featuring music by Michel Legrand and lyrics by Marilyn and Alan Bergman gives a loving nod to the Legrand original by retaining the characteristic sound of the flute. Kent then delivers one of the great versions of the wonderfully contemplative ‘La Valse des Lilas’, written by Legrand, Eddie Barclay and Eddy Marnay. Originally penned for Kent’s 2011 live album, Dreamer In Concert, recorded at La Cigale theatre in Paris, the Jim Tomlinson/Kazuo Ishiguro co-write, ‘Postcard Lovers’, is cast anew in three-quarter time (at Kent’s suggestion).

There’s a brace of wonderful new songs too, ‘Thinking About The Rain’ and ‘A Song That Isn’t Finished Yet’, co-written especially for Kent by Tomlinson and the prolific US songsmith, Cliff Goldmacher. Also featuring Kent’s classic rendition of Jacques Brel’s ‘Ne me quitte pas’ in both French and English (‘If You Go Away’) and an inspired take on Lerner and Loewe’s ‘Show Me’, the album reaches its high-water mark with one of the cornerstones of bossa nova, Antônio Carlos Jobim’s ‘Corcovado’ (featuring English lyrics by Canadian writer and lyricist, Gene Lees) in which Jobim’s ambiguous resolutions create an ineffable sense of timelessness.

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Each week, WDNA music director, Michael Valentine shares his album of the week. Michael’s picks often focus on new jazz releases, but sometimes dip into history with notable and classic releases worth revisiting.



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