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Doozy

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Album Review

Jackie Ryan is one of the premier jazz singers in North America who the general public is unaware of. Perhaps the release of Doozy will boost her image into that of a very fine interpreter of standards and Brazilian tunes. Her flexible and perfectly pitched voice allows her to sing a wide variety of songs, and she handles them all well. Ryan recruited a fine accompanist in pianist Cyrus Chestnut for this two-CD set, alongside east coast all-stars like drummer Carl Allen and bassist Ray Drummond, lesser-known west coasters bassist Neal Smith and bassist Dezron Douglas, and sidemen like trumpeter Jeremy Pelt, tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, and on the Brazilian tunes, guitarist Romero Lubambo. The program is very uneven in terms of upbeat numbers followed by downtempo ballads, and thus the listener experiences the jarring, immediate ups and downs. There's nothing at all wrong with the material, but it could have been lined up better. Ryan's voice goes through phases based on her many influences. She's quite fond of the Art Blakey/Jazz Messengers bluesy shuffle sound as heard on the lighter "Opportunity Please Knock" and the cuter take of "Dat Dere" where Pelt and Alexander play together quite nicely. Her homage to Betty Carter on "Do Something" starts slow, then goes crazy, while "Doozy" emphasizes a deeper toned vocalese with a fantastic solo scat à la Annie Ross. Ryan is clearly influenced by Sarah Vaughan during "Beautiful Moons Ago" where she adopts a huskier tone in a calypso stew, and cops Ernestine Anderson's persona from "Never Make Your Move Too soon" on "My How The Time goes On." The Brazilian numbers are sung in an impressively elucidated Portuguese, Benny Carter's "Summer Serenade" is tinged in bossa nova melancholy, and the ballad "Solamente Una Vez" with Lubambo is utterly gorgeous and sensual. There's a New Orleans shuffle buoying the come on flattery song "Tell Me More and More, and Then Some," while her louder, more operatic Vaughan-like vocal is pronounced on the lengthy, emotional "Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most." The musicianship from all involved is beyond reproach, and Ryan sounds comfortable on all fronts being accompanied by these players, to the point where it lifts her artistry to a higher level. Chestnut is his usual tasteful and sensitive self — check him out on the intro of "Spring" for further evidence of his virtuosic powers. While this CD is very long for any one sitting, pick out favorite tracks and see if they don't become popular replays on your iPod or such similar device. ~ Michael G. Nastos, Rovi

Biography

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '00s

Vocalist Jackie Ryan arrived on the ever-changing jazz scene at the dawning of the new millennium, deriving a classic, yet exotic style and sound. Of Mexican, Irish, French, and Spanish decent, Ryan throws her background it into her music. She sings in Spanish, English, and Portuguese, and echoes of Sarah Vaughan, Duke Ellington, and Billie Holiday...
Full Bio
Doozy, Jackie Ryan
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  • $19.99
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, Latino
  • Released: 04 August 2009

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