I haven’t listened to much over-the-air radio for the past ten years, and even Internet radio is starting to bore me (I’m not talking about you, Martini In The Morning.)
So I’ve set up my own streaming jukebox – from a shelf on the workbench, I can listen to my own growing list of tunes, complete with news on the hour. (Link opens an audio file.)
So – new look for the new year – for each review, I’ll be listing which tracks get added to the personal streaming station – to which I’m able to listen anywhere in the world my travels take me, or at least anywhere with a connection.
Jackie Ryan – Listen Here (Open Art)
Released – January 22, 2013
An eclectic collection of tunes, at turns bluesy, then gospel, then straight-ahead jazz, this one is more like a showcase Jackie Ryan’s many talents.
And they’re all top-notch.
Ms. Ryan’s career started in the blues and gospel genres, and she’s clearly most at home there in this offering. The opening lines to “Accentuate The Positive” ring with the authority of someone who’s spent more than a little time attending church fundamentally, and it’s one of my favorites from this disc.
She’s picked up some great west-coast backing musicians along the way, led by John Clayton on bass and his son, Gerald, on piano. Gilbert Castellanos is on trumpet, Graham Dechter on guitar, Obed Calvaire on drums and Rickey Woodard on saxophone. Nice thing about the group is that while everyone gets their share of the solos, they never go on too long, and they’re always in support of Ms. Ryan.
Ms. Ryan gets it. She’s blessed with a powerful voice and a unique style that defies comparisons to any other singer. In a varied collection such as this, one is bound to have favorites, but they’re all representative of a woman who’s at the top of her game.
Favorites added to the playlist - “The Gypsy In My Soul,” along with “Accentuate The Positive” and “How Little We Know (How Little It Matters).”
I’m still bumming over Patti Page’s death. And while “Tennessee Waltz” was never a favorite of mine, it was far and away her biggest hit, #1 on the Billboard Magazine Pop Singles chart for 13 weeks in 1950.
From that era, then – here is a remarkably well-preserved video of Ms. Page performing her biggest hit.