I have to admit that normally the more traditional standard singer simply is not my cup of tea. I don't like tea. I do like Stephanie Nakasian! Show Me The Way To Get Out Of This World is her new release which hits the street on June 19th 2012 on the Capri Records label and this release embraces everything good about vocal jazz while she is certainly well grounded in the past, Nakasian embraces the current as well as the future with a fearless virtuosity that you will not being hearing in your local hotel lounge anytime soon!
Joined by the Harris Simon Trio there is an intimacy to the recording as though you were the only one in the room. Opening with the stunning "Lonesome Road" there is an organic quality that seems to transcend genre and time itself. I first heard this tune on the old Andy Griffith show but not like this. Suddenly Nakasian breaks into a swing allowing pianist Harris Simon to stretch out and the release transforms itself from the wistful melancholy to a tune of joyous abandon with Nakasian's exemplary ability to scat and create a delightful texture of feel and allow the listener to become emotionally engaged. As a critic or jazz advocate as I prefer to be called, one knows age is beginning to catch up when standard singers are doing Van Morrison. The blues infused swing of Morrison's "Times Are Gettin' Tougher Than Tough" swings are and is an ebullient take on a tune that one remembers long after the last note has faded. "You And The Night And The Music" is a tender somewhat melancholy ballad that shows off Nakasian's pristine vocals and immaculate phrasing.
Far from the more standard release we are treated to more traditional swing, bebop roots, vibrant poly rhythms and textured harmonic movement that takes what could be considered the more typical and elevates Nakasian to the level of special!
As vocal release go, Show Me The Way To Get Out Of This World is easily one of the better eclectic releases of the year and certainly a new release to mark on your calendar!
Tracks: Lonesome Road; So In Love; Lucky So And So; Easy Street; Nica's Dream; I Concentrate On You; The End Of A Love Affair; Don't Blame Me; Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most; Times Are Gettin' Tougher Than Tough; Ill Wind; Control Yourself; You And The Night And The Music; Zanzibar; Show Me The Way.
Personnel: Stephanie Nakasian: vocals; Harris Simon: piano; Chris Brydge: bass; Billy Williams: drums.