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A Jazz Portrait of Johnny Mercer

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Album Review

Sylvia Syms was nearly 65 when she performed this concert and she knew she sounded her age, joking about it several times during the concert. However that makes little difference for the late singer's touching interpretations of Johnny Mercer's lyrics (and her verbal introductions to each song) are often definitive, making this one of her finest recordings. Trumpeter Joe Newman and Al Cohn on tenor (both of whom actually had no opportunity to rehearse with Syms) take occasional solos and the rhythm section (which includes guitarist Gene Bertoncini) keeps the music jazz-oriented although Syms was really closer to being a cabaret singer. One comes away from this previously unreleased program (performed at one of Jack Kleinsinger's "Highlights in Jazz" concerts) greatly appreciating the talents of both Johnny Mercer and the sorely missed Sylvia Syms.

Biography

Born: 02 December 1917 in Brooklyn, NY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Vocalist and jazz singer, Sylvia Syms was known as the "world's greatest saloon singer" by Frank Sinatra. She sang everything from cabaret music to light jazz. Her claim to fame is her versatility...
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A Jazz Portrait of Johnny Mercer, Sylvia Syms
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