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Album Review

There's a very good reason that the sticker on this lovely cabaret-styled live concert date is billed as the singer's "first new release in eight years" — she died of cancer in December, 1995, just weeks after the performance documented here. The release of this disc and the rest of her catalog in 2005 isn't quite like the Eva Cassidy story. Cassidy was an unknown when she died, but Nancy LaMott, discovered in the late '80s on the Manhattan club scene by composer and producer David Friedman, was quite a growing sensation when her time came. She recorded a total of five albums on the label Friedman created for her, appeared on numerous morning talk shows, was a critical favorite and performed for the Clintons at the White House several times. The uniqueness of this release goes far beyond her emotionally compelling voice, unpretentious flair for phrasing and charming verbal asides; her choice of material is unique and atypical. For every standard love song ("I Didn't Know What Time It Was"), there's a wittily rendered ditty like "Jeepers Creepers" or "I Got the Sun in the Morning," or a literary type piece like Rupert Holmes' "The People That You Never Get to Love." Her best performance is the restrained version of "Waters of March," which is done with sparse, piano based accompaniment. She's also all aces on Friedman's inspirational tunes "Listen to My Heart" and "Help Is on the Way," which display an optimism that stands in the face of her lifelong health struggles. While it's doubtful Lamott will enjoy the posthumous phenomenon Cassidy has, hers is still a timeless talent well-worth discovering.


Born: 30 December 1951 in Midland, MI

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Nancy LaMott was born December 30, 1951, in Midland, MI, or as she termed it, a suburb of the Dow Chemical Corporation. Clearly a gifted musician, she learned music in public schools and started publicly singing with the big jazz dance band of her father, trumpeter Jack LaMott, in 1966 at age 15 while dreaming of a professional career. As a teenager she worked at the local Sears outlet. But in her late teens, Nancy developed Crohn's disease, a serious bowel disorder that often caused her to be hospitalized....
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Nancy Lamott - Live At Tavern On the Green, Nancy Lamott
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