Patricia Barber: Laura
Patricia Barber (vocals, piano)
Live: A Fortnight in Paris (Blue Note 78213)
Patricia Barber (vocals, piano),
Neal Alger (guitar), Michael Arnopol (bass), Eric Montzka (drums).
Composed by David Raksin and Johnny Mercer.
Recorded: La Rochelle, Metz and Paris, March and April 2004
Rating: 90/100 (learn more)
Patricia Barber always puts a few surprises into her songs -- odd poetic phrases, unusual cultural references, layers of irony or ambiguity, or strange musical bric-a-brac. But the big surprise on this track is that she sings it absolutely straight. Yes, Barber the traditional chanteuse comes to the fore here, and contents herself with tapping into the inherent beauty of Raksin's melody and the smart Mercer lyric. And she does it very, very well. If Barber ever decides to abandon her role as the postmodern philosopher of jazz vocals, she could always find a second career as a singer of standards.
Reviewer: Ted Gioia
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