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Easy to Love

Roberta Gambarini

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Album Review

Roberta Gambarini was a virtual unknown outside of Europe before coming to the United States and dazzling both seasoned jazz musicians and critics alike. Under the wing of Benny Carter for several years prior to his death in 2003, the Italian singer with an expressive, clear, and consistently swinging vocal style has seen her reputation spread widely, culminating in this initial American release. Her delightful take on the standard "Easy to Love" includes a bit of soft scatting in tandem with Chuck Berghofer's bass. Her expressive interpretation of "On the Sunny Side of the Street" finds her scatting to each of the demanding solos from a recorded collaboration by Sonny Stitt, Dizzy Gillespie, and Sonny Rollins, as well as adding some original vocalese to each of the solos. She is just as effective handling Bill Evans' bittersweet ballad "The Two Lonely People" and Billy Strayhorn's overlooked gem "Multi-Colored Blue." Tenor saxophonist James Moody is a special guest on "Lover Man" and the swinging "Centerpiece," on the latter playing in unison with Gambarini and engaging in a friendly, often hilarious scat duet with her as well. With this first-rate 2006 release, Roberta Gambarini makes a strong case for consideration as one of the most impressive jazz vocalists to arrive on the scene over the previous two decades; her attractive voice, impeccable taste, and skills as an arranger make her impossible to resist.

Customer Reviews

Roberta is pretty good!

I really like her albums, but one day on my iPod I had it set to list songs and noticed that Roberta Gambarini and Ella Fitzgerald both recorded Easy To Love. Do yourself a favor and listen to both versions. It's almost eerie how much both Ella and Roberta sound alike on this song.
I really think Roberta Gambarini is a serious talent and will only improve with age, like a fine wine.

Biography

Born: 1972 in Torino, Italy

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Born and raised in Turin, Italy, to music-loving parents (who had actually first met at a jazz concert), Roberta Gambarini grew up listening to her father's record collection constantly. Her first vocal inspiration was Louis Armstrong, but she soon discovered Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Carmen McRae, and Billie Holiday, as well as blues artists like Mahalia Jackson and Bessie Smith. At age 12 she began playing the clarinet, but realizing the versatility and talents of her clear alto, she moved...
Full Bio
Easy to Love, Roberta Gambarini
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