Norah Jones: Wish I Could
Wish I Could
Norah Jones (vocals)
Not Too Late (Blue Note 74516)
Julia Kent (cello), Jeffrey Zeigler (cello).
Composed by Norah Jones and Lee Alexander.
Recorded: New York. No date given (CD released in 2007)
Rating: 89/100 (learn more)
Jones' third CD, Not Too Late, debuted at the top of the charts in early 2007, and sold 400,000 copies during its first week of sales in the US. Huge success? Perhaps not: Jones' last release moved a million copies out of the starting gate. Jones misses the production oversight of Arif Mardin, who shepherded her first two releases into existence, but passed away in June 2006. Yet Not Too Late starts on a high point with "Wish I Could," a wistful ballad propelled by the exemplary guitar work of Jesse Harris. Jones' intimate phrasing and her mastery of microtones make her an ideal interpreter of this sort of material. She still needs to prove to this listener that she can thrive at faster tempos and amid more aggressive grooves. But I'm not betting against Norah Jones. Don't believe the critics who tell you she is just a commercial success who won't stand the test of time. Jones is the real deal, and deserves recognition as one of the finest jazz vocalists of her generation.
Reviewer: Ted Gioia
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Tags: jazz vocals