Shirley Horn: Here's to Life
Here's to Life
Shirley Horn (vocals)
Here's to Life (Gitanes Jazz/Verve 314 511 879/2)
Chuck Domanico (bass), Harvey Mason (percussion), Richard Todd (French horn solo) with symphony orchestra.
Composed by Artie Butler & Phyllis Molinary. Arranged by Johnny Mandel.
Recorded: Hollywood, CA, 1991
Rating: 95/100 (learn more)
Uncharacteristically, Shirley Horn's not accompanying herself on piano here. Instead she has the lushly responsive company of the great arranger/conductor Johnny Mandel. With a full orchestra wrapped around her lush, smoky contralto, she goes at her own singular tempo, delivering each word of "Here's to LIFE, here's to LOVE, here's to YOU" with anthem-like intimacy. It's a deep, wee-hours conversation with a beloved friend about everything that really matters. Small wonder Miles Davis, to whom this album is dedicated, was a devoted Horn fan. Miss Horn passed in 2005, leaving us with music to last for the ages.
Reviewer: Andrew Velez