Elli Fordyce: Don't Blame Me
Don't Blame Me
Elli Fordyce (vocals)
Something Still Cool
Elli Fordyce (vocals),
Harry Whitaker (piano), Mark Wade (bass), Joe Strasser (drums).
Composed by Jimmy McHugh & Dorothy Fields.
Recorded: New York, 1999; released 2007
Rating: 84/100 (learn more)
A lyric should last a thousand years. – Jon Hendricks
… and a singer should sing it like she's lived a thousand years. Less mature singers tend to substitute impersonation and pretense for life experience. Not Elli Fordyce. She knows whereof she sings. Penned to last in 1933, this song – covered by Ethel Waters, Monk, Sarah, Nat Cole, and more – loses none of its swing or sexy sweetness in this sage singer's telling. Fordyce's forte is the way she plays space like the often ignored instrument it is; she gives herself and us the time to picture the lyric. Choosing notes wisely, she and her astute trio create a laid-back yet layered scene. These subtle techniques take time to live and learn, and the less experienced will just have to watch and wait. Maybe the world moves far too fast to fathom art that lasts. Maybe some of us give up too soon. Take a tip from Elli: dig the space, the emotion, the depth, and the detailed beauty of life, and try to make it last a thousand years.
Reviewer: Marissa Dodge