Face it, a negative write up on a Christmas release is a sure ticket to hell. Fortunately this well thought out package with the impeccable vocal talent of Jason Paul Curtis would not have even remotely come close. Although if I had to make one critical remark, "Lovers Holiday" screams Valentines Day for me and not Christmas. Perhaps this is a cleaver way to get around the issue of "Holiday" or perhaps being a critic the concept of love is much like free jazz, an acquired taste for yours truly.
A solid collection of jazz standards and Christmas favorites has this release as a can not miss if you may be in the market for some new music this Christmas season. The slight "conceptual" idea behind this particular release was originated out of the need for new Christmas songs. While my initial reaction would be given the short run of roughly 60 days new tunes born out of desperation rather than genuine necessity may fall short of the mark but Curtis is as every bit a solid lyricist as he is an accomplished vocalist especially with his original composition which is the title track to Lovers Holiday. Mixed into a more broad based seasonal approach we have "Let It Snow" and "I've Got My Love To Keep Me Warm" which are done with a sixties style vibe that translates quite nicely with the band Swinglab and special guest big band Swing Machine. Other Curtis originals include, "Good This Year", "Blue Friday", Our Time Of Year" and "Winter Wind" all done with great flair and captivating originality.
Take great vocals, solid originals and the elegant sound of a swinging big band and you have a can't miss release in Lovers Holiday!
Tracks: Our Time Of Year; Let It Snow; Christmas Time Is Here; Good This Year; Blue Friday; Lovers Holiday; You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To; In The Still Of The Night; I've Got My Love To Keep Me Warm; You're Something; Winter Wind; The Christmas Waltz.
Swinglab Personnel: Ray Mabalot: piano; John Dahlman: bass; Woody Hume: drums; Jason Paul Curtis: vocals.
Saxophones: Ricky Parrell, Pete BarenBregge, Andrew Snapp, Dave Schiff, Fred Koch.
Trombones: Doug Elliott, Rick Lillard, Jerry O'Sullivan, Jeff Bonk.
Trumpets: Chris Walker, Paul Murtha, Mike Barber, Geoff Peterson, Laura Peterson.
Rhythm: Wade Beach, Dallas Smith, Charlie Thomas, Jeff Johnson.
Check out - www.jasonpaulcurtis.com and www.swingmachineband.com
Thanks to Jim at Jazz Promo Services.