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Helen Merrill With Clifford Brown

Helen Merrill

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Album Review

Though she eventually came to be known as a "singer's singer," Helen Merrill's 1954 debut is an unmitigated success of mainstream jazz. Besides introducing the uniquely talented young singer, the date also featured small-group arrangements by Quincy Jones and marks the introduction of another future star, trumpeter Clifford Brown. Formidable as his playing is, Brown never overshadows Merrill. She is fully up to the challenge on all fronts and enthusiastically tackles uptempo numbers such as "You'd Be So Nice to Come Home To" and "Falling in Love with Love" with aplomb. A winning stylistic combination of cool jazz and hard bop, Merrill particularly excels on Mel Tormé's "Born to Be Blue," making the sophisticated tune her own as she revels in Tormé's down-and-out lyric.

Customer Reviews


Pity the istore album review focuses on Clifford Brown. Don't let it fool you, this is most conniving teamwork: Helen Merrill will intoxicate you, and Clifford Brown roams in the background until it's time to come in for the kill. Venomous vocal jazz.

One of the greatest jazz vocal albums ever made

Helen Merrill´s first album is a classic due to the combination of exquisite material, great musicians and fabulous, moody arrangements. This is jazz singing at it´s best!

The other great Jazz vocalist.

Helen Merrill is the greatest Female vocalist...she is the Queen of Jazz vocal's she opitimizes what vocal jazz artist's represent " Ella- Dinah "etc. A young vocal artist Jane Monheit has the same Quality.......Vocal Jazz lover...Ralph F


Born: July 21, 1930 in New York, NY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

A fine singer with a warm, expressive voice, Helen Merrill's infrequent recordings tend to be quite special with plenty of surprises and chance-taking. She started singing in public in 1944 and was with the Reggie Childs Orchestra during 1946-1947. Merrill, who was married for a period to clarinetist Aaron Sachs, had opportunities to sit in with some of the top modernists of the time, including Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, and Bud Powell. She was with Earl Hines in 1952 and started recording regularly...
Full Bio
Helen Merrill With Clifford Brown, Helen Merrill
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Customer Ratings