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Double Rainbow

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Album Review

There were few important new male jazz singers on the scene when Kevin Mahogany released his stunning CD debut as a leader, accompanied by a first-call rhythm section consisting of pianist Kenny Barron, bassist Ray Drummond, and drummer Lewis Nash, plus tenor saxophonist Ralph Moore added on selected tracks. Gifted with a rich baritone, Mahogany begins with a powerful interpretation of "All Blues," followed by a fun scatted exchange with Nash to introduce a romp through "Confirmation," in which he masters Eddie Jefferson's vocalese lyrics at a fast tempo without a slip and makes a number of funny detours in the scatted solo that follows. Other highlights include the shimmering "Double Rainbow," the soulful ballad "Our Love Remains," a comical interpretation of "Dat Dere," and a reverent interpretation of Charles Mingus' "Duke Ellington's Sound of Love." Mahogany's "Three Little Words" (not the well-known standard with the same title) is a pretty ballad set as a bossa nova. To wrap his outstanding introductory CD, he closes with a gospel-flavored take of Sam Cooke's "Bring It on Home."


Born: 30 July 1958 in Kansas City, MO

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s

Kevin Mahogany's sudden prominence in the mid-'90s was a relief to many who felt that male jazz singers under the age of 60 were non-existent. His swinging style is reminiscent, but not derivative of, Joe Williams. Mahogany played piano, clarinet, and various saxophones while growing up before deciding to specialize in singing. He attended Baker University in Kansas and sang locally in some R&B groups. In the early '90s, Mahogany dedicated himself to jazz and, after two fine albums for Enja, he signed...
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Double Rainbow, Kevin Mahogany
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