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  • Dreamsville
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Jan. 26 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Candid
  • ASIN: B00005UD83
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #339,368 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. I've Got a Crush on You
2. When Your Lover Has Gone
3. Isn't It a Pity?
4. You Are There
5. Under a Blanket of Blue
6. Dreamsville
7. Polka Dots and Moonbeams
8. Hushabye Mountain
9. Little Girl Blue
10. You're Looking at Me
11. Violets for Your Furs
12. Thanks for the Memory

Product Description

Product Description

The New York Native who Resides in England is a Formidable Presence on the Modern Jazz Scene. This is her Fourth Album Exploring the Standards and the Reviews have all Been Sterling. The Emphasis Here is on the Ballads and her Breathy Emphasis and Phrasing Are Nothing Less Than Spectacular and Riveting. Her Vocals Are Not "Dressed Up" Or Enhanced by Studio Technique. What You Get is Pure, Raw Singing Talent that Shines Like a Fine Jewel.

Stacey Kent has given jazz singing a huge fillip in the last two years. She has swiftly become the favourite of musicians and ordinary listeners alike. Her work has also defined the field, for she is not aiming, as are most other singers, at a "cabaret" or "night club" audience. Stacey Kent is a committed jazz singer as were Lee Wiley and Billie Holiday before her. She also has musical qualities in common with those two. This album is made up entirely of ballads, the singer's forté, and this far-sighted idea pays off generously. Her versions of these classics are awash with ingenious invention and her inspired timing is unique. It was an imaginative idea to put the verse of "I've Got A Crush On You" in the middle of the song instead of at the beginning. But that sort of thinking abounds in an album that is destined to become a classic. Miss Kent has the advantage of superior accompaniment, provided by her husband Jim Tomlinson on reeds and by the Dave Newton Trio. --Steve Voce --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

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By Chris Fischer on Dec 30 2001
Format: Audio CD
It took me a while to get turned on to Stacey Kent, because she doesn't get nearly the hype that Diana Krall and now Jane Monheit get (Krall deserves it, Monheit needs to grow as a singer before she will). But having heard Dreamsville, I'm excited to have found a new artist to add to my playlist. First, there is that voice: sweet yet breathy and seductive. Add to that the fact that she knows how to truly sing, not just exhibit her vocal skills (something Monheit desperately needs to learn). Kent makes each song her own, yet does it in such a way that the song retains its identity. There's not a weak link on this CD, but for me, "Hushabye Mountain" stands out as a showcase of Kent's ability to breathe emotion into a song. Be warned, however: if you're one of those people who think Krall's "The Look of Love" is "boring" because "all the songs sound the same" (i.e. because there's no "Hit That Jive Jack") then this album may be a bit above your musical appreciation skills.
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By Tony C on Aug. 26 2001
Format: Audio CD
I feel I must respond to the review by Mr Leroy James of New York city. First off, I don't quite see how the British are somehow meant to be less discerning than American and "international" audiences. The British jazz market is very discerning, certainly no less so than over the Atlantic. The British jazz market is smaller but if anything that tends to make it even more discerning. Many jazz musicians now find they are receiving a far better and more knowledgable reception over here than in America and there is generally a lively interest heavyweight jazz of the non-soft variety, both American and European. As for Kenny G, well I think Mr James will discover that lovers of Kenny G exist the world over! For some reason. Secondly, far from having no understanding of jazz, Stacey Kent presents a lucid and intelligent jazz programme on British radio. Third off, I can't stand Kenny G and I love Charlie Parker and John Coltrane, I've sold my own grandmother to see Dave Holland live, but I also happen to think Stacey Kent is pretty good too! Far from being a "little girl lost" type, having seen her live, she comes over both as being remarkably feisty and amusing and also as being deeply committed to the music she sings. And she works a crowd well too. True, the style is very different to Ella Fitzgerald or Dinah Washington or even Cassandra Wilson but I don't think it suffers for all that. Dreamsville is a ballads album, so if numbers with a little more pace are your thing you may want to try one of Stacey Kent's other albums first.
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Format: Audio CD
The crass commercialization of jazz continues with this latest offering from the publishing mills. Kent's "cleaned-up" remakes of the great jazz standards have proved popular with a conservative British public who still shrink from the pure energy and passion that came out of Harlem and beyond but, at the end of the day, it remains to be seen how this album will fare among more discerning American and international audiences.
Kent has a sweet "little girl lost" voice that her publishers have marketed up to the hilt. (The album cover is a cloying remake of an English commercial from the '70's for chocolates!). What Marilyn did for "Happy Birthday", Kent does for the great jazz classics.
The recording is rescued, in part, by some lyrical playing by the backing crew but true lyricism and musicianship largely stop short of the singer herself. As Variety magazine said in their review "she sings clearly, cleanly and in tune". There is little evidence of any great talent or understanding of, say, the basics of jazz improvisation or even the heart and soul of jazz itself.
If you prefer Kenny G. to Bird or 'Trane, you're certain to love Stacey K. But if you find that light-weight pastiche is no replacement for passion, then you're better off buying the digitally remastered versions of Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald and the other late greats and not let the publishers play you for a sucker. Dreamsville? This stuff makes jazz look like Vaudeville.
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Format: Audio CD
Stacey Kent has a sweet voice; it's sensual and evocative with echoes of the late Julie London. Another reviewer thought she was "hands down" over Jane Monheit, but I must strongly disagree. Ms. Kent is a talented song stylist, but not yet a mature jazz artist in the truest sense. I find her inadequate, when compared to the depths of emotion displayed by Ms. Monheit, who arrived on the scene as fully formed as a real jazz singer and artist can be, and is turning even non-jazz fans on with her fresh, sensual and unique interpretations of the great American songbook. Stacey Kent's renditions of classic pop standards all have a "sameness" to them, and her back up band here seems awfully turgid and uninspired -- which certainly cannot be said of Jane Monheit's (recorded) groups of sensitive and swinging jazz veterans. Ms. Kent's sound is nice and airy and she may yet blossom vocally, but at present she sounds miles away from being a real contender among current and serious female jazz singers such as Jane Monheit.
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Format: Audio CD
Every time Stacey Kent brings out a new album, it is, quite unbelievably, better than her last. Her string may end with this one because it just can't get any better. This album is made up of songs that friends and fans have requested and is filled with great ballads that Stacey makes all her own. The proof is the last cut, Thanks For The Memory, that she does with just the elegant piano backing of David Newton. It will probably be the first time you hear the song and don't immediately think of Bob Hope. Two other numbers demonstrate the range of possibilities in the ballad form. When You're Lover Is Gone has a drive and swing that showcases the whole group's ability while You Are There is a quiet and introspective reading that commands attention. Backing Stacey is her usual assembly. Jim Tomlinson's spare saxophone complements her phrasing most graciously. Her regulars, Colin Oxley on guitar, David Newton on Piano and Simon Thorpe on bass are joined by Jasper Kviberg on drums, are a joy to hear and the entire group makes it seem effortless. With nary a weak track on the disc, it would be hard to see how this album can be topped. But then, that's what I felt about her last one, Let Yourself Go. My only complaint is that this album has been out in England since last October and it's taken this long to cross the pond.
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