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Map to the Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro

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iTunes Review

Pianist Billy Childs studied composition at USC and has written commissions for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Los Angeles Philharmonic while also playing jazz. Here, he pushes all these skills to the limit by arranging and orchestrating this stunning collection of Laura Nyro songs with assistance from a long, impressive, and varied list of musicians. (Names are included alongside each track.) Music fans will no doubt have a passing acquaintance with classics like “And When I Die,” “Stoned Soul Picnic,” and others, but there are also deep cuts here like the title track and “Been on a Train.” All are dealt with a sure-handed blend (just as Nyro did) of soulful vocals, funk groove, singer/songwriter introspection, pop hooks, richly textured strings, and jazzy solos. Moreover, it’s woven together in a seamless way that honors the artist’s writing and unifies the dozens of players into a unified whole.

Customer Reviews

Grammy time

Best Album of the Year? I think so. Thanks Billy for this fabulous recording. Just what we needed.

The World is waking up to the genius of Ms Nyro

Billy Childs is a grammy winning pianist composer who has capped off his illustrious career with this Totally stunning album of songs by Laura Nyro—Somehow by not trying to copy Laura—he catches Her “essence”—So many Highlights—but I love the title song and “And When I Die>” Also seek out Another CD that was released Last year on Laura’s music—“The Laura Nyro Project” by Mark Winkler- it too re-imagines Laura’s songs—as done by a male jazz singer. Great stuff—with wonderful guest stars and fantastic arrangements.

Laura Is Smiling

Laura Nyro fans know that her songs connected emotionally most intensely when you saw her perform them live. They often lost something when interpretted by others. Finally, that has changed. This album brings forth the power and fury of Laura's songs that came from deep inside her. Well done. Excellent. Thank you.

Biography

Born: March 8, 1957 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

One of the most promising of the pianist-composers of the 1990s, Billy Childs is a superb player and an underrated writer. He toured with J.J. Johnson (with whom he made his recording debut), graduated from USC, had an important association with Freddie Hubbard (1978-1984), and led Night Flight (a group with Dianne Reeves). Childs recorded four albums as a leader for Windham Hill Jazz (starting 1988's Take for Example This...) and one for Stretch; started writing commissioned works in 1992 (including...
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Billy Childs

Map to the Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro, Billy Childs
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Contemporaries