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Chamber Music Society

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Editors’ Notes

On her 2008 self-titled release, bassist and vocalist Esperanza Spalding seemed to be gushing with music but at times the results were scattershot. 2010’s Chamber Music Society is a tighter affair and Spalding’s vocals, at times wordless, have a sharper sense of purpose. The core unit here — Spalding, drummer Terri Lyne Carrington, keyboardist Leo Genovese, and percussionist Quintino Cinalli — is joined by a string trio on a number of tracks. (Gil Goldstein collaborated with Spalding on the string arrangements and production.) The opener “Little Fly” effectively sets the words of a Walt Whitman poem to music for voice, bass, and string trio. “Chacarera,” based on the Argentinean rhythm, is full of clattering percussion, zigzagging vocal lines, and fine work from cellist Dave Eggar. Eggar also solos on an intriguing cover of “Wild Is the Wind,” which has nice melodica from Genovese. Special treat: the great Milton Nascimento joins Spalding for a vocal duet on “Apple Blossom.”

Customer Reviews

Real Music

This is a perfect example of what people should be doing with music. Its an innovative and intimate album(not just a couple of 99 cent singles and a load of fillers) with true musicianship displayed. Her approach to this record is phenominal and is executed perfectly. Every song on this is gold without exception. For all you close-minded "true jazz" enthusiasts, she is exploring places in her musical background and mixing them to make something completely new. She never asked to be labled as jazz, thats just how her music came out sounding like to many. Esperanza Spalding is a real musician writting, arranging, and playing real music with other real musicians and this record is a testament to that. Keep on doing what you do.

Glad for a fresh new sound

I feel bad that everyone is hating on her because bieber or drake didn't win. Between the three, she deserves this because the other two haven't brought much to the table other than their fan base. Glad that the genre of jazz is being appreciated.


It pains me to read the poor reviews given by a few. Perhaps those reviewers aren't fans of the two genres that Ms. Spalding has melded together efforlessly? Oh well, I understand what she's presented and it's refreshing to know that her record label allows this level of artistic freedom. Vive L'Esperanza!!!


Born: 1984 in Portland, OR

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Hailed as a prodigy on the acoustic double bass within months of first touching the instrument as a 15-year-old, Esperanza Spalding has emerged as a fine jazz bassist, but has also distinguished herself playing blues, funk, hip-hop, pop fusion, and Brazilian and Afro-Cuban styles as well. Born in Portland, OR in 1984, Spalding was not well served by the public school system and soon dropped out of classes to be home-schooled. Returning to the public school system at 15, she encountered her first...
Full Bio
Chamber Music Society, Esperanza Spalding
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