Breakfast on the Morning Tram Import
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Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
|1. The Ice Hotel|
|3. Ces Petits Riens|
|4. I Wish I Could Go Travelling Again|
|5. So Many Stars|
|6. Samba Saravah|
|7. Breakfast On the Morning Tram|
|8. Never Let Me Go|
|9. So Romantic|
|10. Hard Hearted Hannah|
|11. La Saison Des Pluies|
|12. What a Wonderful World|
After 10 years and 6 albums on the indie label, Candid, Stacey Kent finally releases her major label debut on Blue Note Records. A multi-award winner (2001 British Jazz Award, 2002 BBC Jazz Award Best Vocalist, etc) Stacey has built a huge fanbase for her cool, classy interpretations of the Great American Songbook, all recorded with husband, arranger, producer and now songwriter Jim Tomlinson (himself a winner of the 2006 Album of the Year British Jazz Award). On "Breakfast..." Jim contributes 4 new songs written with the writer Kazuo Ishiguro - one of a legion of fans that Stacey has attracted over the years (they met after he played one of her songs on Desert Island Discs!!) and this is the first time that they have featured their own songs on an album.
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Top Customer Reviews
A recent addition to the Blue Note roster of recording artists, now Stacey Kent boasts in U.K. six best-selling albums, a string of awards, including the 2001 British Jazz Award and 2002 BBC Jazz Award "Best Vocalist", the 2004 Backstage Bistro Award and the 2006 Album of the Year for "The Lyric" as well as a fan base that enables her to sell out concert halls around the world.
Her latest album "Breakfast On a Morning Tram" includes a mixture of classic standards as well as new songs written and produced by her husband and saxophonist, Jim Tomlinson, and has on her team a surprise star writer (award-winning novelist) Kazuo Ishiguro, who supplies four angular lyrics on her Blue Note debut.
"She conveys the sense of a person talking to herself". Ishiguro wrote, "the faltering hesitancies, the exuberant rushes of inner thought".
It probably would have been easy for the expat American to continue ploughing a comfortable swing-revivalist furrow.
For the past 10 years, she has been mainly singing numbers form the great American Songbooks. However, on this CD, she sings lesser known beautiful songs (a folksily soulful "Landslide" - from Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks), a couple of Serge Gainsbourg romances delivered in French ( "Ces petits riens" and "La saison des Pluies"') , another pearl of a song, the elegant bossa nova "Samba Savarah", also delicately sung in French and three numbers from the Songbook, a bluesily swinging "Hard Hearted Hannah", "Never let me go" and and an account of "What a Wonderful World" as a wondering whisper.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Kent, who was born in South Orange, New Jersey, met her talented husband, saxophonist, now producer/arranger/composer, Jim Tomlinson, with whom she works, while both were students at London's 125 year old Guildhall School of Music and Drama. The singer, whose clear voice and delivery lie somewhere between the flirtatious sound of Norah Jones, and the ever-popular smoky barroom sound now delivered by Diana Krall and Claire Martin, among others, was initially championed by British critic and jazz trumpeter Humphrey Lyttelton. She credits Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake, Nancy Wilson, and Cannonball Adderley as the biggest influences on her work. She has won the 2001 British Jazz Award, and the 2002 British Broadcasting Corporation Jazz Award for Best Vocalist. She has a large, devoted following that should be pleased by her newest release.
"Breakfast" gives more than a nod to France, where Kent did post-graduate work, and is exceedingly popular: she was, in fact, signed by the Paris office of Blue Note. The French gave the 2006 "Boy Next Door" Gold Album status within six months of its release. They've greeted "Breakfast" by giving it, within six weeks of its release, Top #20 status on the general charts, and Top #10 status on the jazz charts; they've also given it an enthusiastic sell-out audience at Paris's legendary Olympia Music Hall. The new album includes two songs Kent identifies as her personal favorites from the works of the French singer-songwriter Serge Gainsbourg, "Ces Petits Riens," and "La Saison des Pluies." It also includes a cover of that rhythmic tune from "Un Homme et Une Femme," (that'll be "A Man and A Woman," to us), "Samba Saravah," by Pierre Barouh.
"So Many Stars" is another lilting samba on this Latin-tinged record, music by the Brazilian Sergio Mendes, words by the American powerhouse duo Marilyn and Alan Bergman. In addition, Kent covers "Landslide," by Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac, in tribute to the Colorado Rockies, where she and Tomlinson enjoy spending their down time. "Never Let Me Go," "Hard Hearted Hannah," and "Wonderful World" are from the Great American Songbook that's served the singer so well.
Finally, "Breakfast" boasts four unusual, outstanding new compositions, all with lyrics by British Booker Prize winning novelist Kazuo Ishiguro, who wrote the liner notes for the 2003 release "In Love Again," and music by Tomlinson, with whose saxophone Kent sings in delicious close harmony. These songs, the Latin-grooving "Ice Hotel," the title song, "I Wish I Could Go Travelling Again," and "So Romantic," allow Kent's whispering voice to suggest, as Ishiguro has noted, almost a private, inner conversation, with its hesitations and asides, that remains close to the rhythms, inflections, and informalities of everyday speech. But then, so many of her listeners feel that Kent is singing for them alone, telling a wistful story, as she likes to do. Famous jazz lover Clint Eastwood asked her to perform at his 70th birthday party. Most of us can't quite afford that, unfortunately, but I've been lucky enough to catch her a few times in her month-long stands at New York's esteemed Algonquin Hotel: and, yes, she's also played Carnegie Hall. You want to catch her if you can.
Yes, I guess she succeeded in revealing that she could also record non-standards and French songs as she never done before since most of her albums are standards-oriented in which she excels because she is one of the very best interpreters of The Great American Songbook. I have enjoyed her albums in my collection and they get a fair share of playtime in my listening adventure.
"Breakfast On The Morning Tram" was recorded in England in 2007 and released on the same year under Blue Note. It is Ms. Kent's first project with the prestigious recording company known for its high-quality jazz albums. It presents Stacey Kent in her most relaxed renditions of a plateful of contemporary songs, a spoonful of standards, and a scoop of French chansons. She is backed by her regular, ever reliable, uber talented bandmates: Jim Tomlinson (sax/flute), John Parricelli (guitar), Graham Harvey (piano), Dave Chamberlain (double bass) and Matt Skelton (drums/percussions). Jim Tomlinson wrote the striking arrangements on the entire tracks and the band's interplay is simply splendid.
The repertoire starts off with "The Ice Hotel," an original song with lyrics written by Kazuo Ishiguro set to glowing, well-composed music by Jim Tomlinson, a superb saxophonist whose technique has the same quality and finesse with that of Stan Getz.
Ray Evans and Jay Livingston's "Never Let Me Go" is the theme song from the 1956 movie "The Scarlet Hour." It was performed by Nat King Cole in that movie. The songwriting pair was also known for their many famous songs most notably "Mona Lisa" and "Dear Heart." She renders it immaculately with utmost respect to the real essence of the song--no frills and extra toppings--just the perfect way the songwriters expected it to be sung. Simple yet full of charms.
The French songs are very special treats for my ears. The rhythms of "Samba Saravah" and "Ces Petits Riens" are engagingly enchanting. "La Saison Des Pluies" is very delicately delivered with only a gentle guitar accompaniment by John Parricelli. It is a soothing serenade.
Sergio Mendes, Alan and Marilyn Bergman's "So Many Stars" is the peach of my ear. It is one of the most beautiful renditions ever recorded. Other noteworthy versions of this lovely song in my music collection include that of Natalie Cole (Ask a Woman Who Knows ), Jane Monheit (Surrender and Come Dream With Me ), Sarah Vaughan (Jazz Signatures - Send in the Clowns: Very Best Of ), Barbra Streisand (What Matters Most - Barbra Streisand Sings The Lyrics of Alan And Marilyn Bergman) and of course the original recording of Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66 (Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66 - Greatest Hits).
She ends this pleasing presentation with a sempiternal standard made popular by the legendary Louis Armstrong, "What A Wonderful World," which highlights John Parricelli's attention-grabbing guitar riffs.
I'm a staunch appreciator of Stacey Kent and Jim Tomlinson music and have collected more than a dozen of their remarkable CDs to enjoy forever. I always look forward to their new albums.
I graciously recommend this album. You'll enjoy it as much as I do!
She has made her mark her in the States as well, though not with quite the success enjoyed across the pond. Perhaps this c.d. will change things. IMO, it is her best.
Ms. Kent has been known previously as a standards singer, but on this--her debut on Blue Note--she branches out. Ironically, with the inclusion of some "originals" (well, music by her husband and saxophone bandmate, Jim Tomlinson, and novelist Kazuo Ishiguro), she reveals herself as one of the finest interpreters of modern song around.
In particular, the highlight for me is her treatment of the Bergmans' "So Many Stars." IMO, this is the finest cover ever of that great song. Ms. Kent hits just the right note of regret--not overdramatic, but definitely there.
But there are other delights to savor on this disc. I love: the sly nudge and wink on "The Ice Hotel"; the finger-snappin' cool on "Ces petits Riens"; the jazzy, cosmopolitan feel on the title track; the light, dancing quality of "Samba Saravah"; and the state of bliss on "What a Wonderful World" (with John Parricelli's guitar a major contributor to that state). And this disc is probably the only time--outside of a barbershop quartet convention--that you'll hear the novelty song from the '20's, "Hard-Hearted Hannah." Like everything else here, it works.
Of the Stacey Kent c.d.'s with which I'm familiar, I think this is her best. Definitely recommended. RC