#4 Vocal Jazz CD of 2013. NPR She's got moxie. ESSENCE
...one of the finest vocal jazz albums of 2013. JAZZWISE
SOUTHERN GIRL RENÉ MARIE TOURING NON-STOP WITH
MUSICAL TRIBUTE TOEARTHA KITT
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@ New Orleans Jazz Fest April 26
@ Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola May 15-18
@ Kennedy Center May 24
@ Spoleto Festival MAY 26
FEATURED ON NPR ALL THINGS CONSIDERED THIS MONTH
René Marie - singer, actress, writer. Eartha Kitt - singer, actress, writer.
Never before has there been a vocal recording tipping the hat to the divine Ms. Kitt and her fiery, sensual and clever interpretations of songs. With her incredible range of vocal ability, her powerful emotional resonance and strong independent streak, René is the right artist to conceive of this historic project, which is taking fans, media and the industry by storm as she tours non-stop internationally to support the music and her reverence for Ms. Kitt. I Wanna Be Evil (With Love to Eartha Kitt) is René's third recording for Motema Music and her 10th career album. René, a vocalist/writer/actress from Virginia, knows just how to evoke the memory and legend of Eartha while making it her own.
Eartha Kitt's daughter Kitt Shapiro, who maintains her mother's legacy via EarthaKitt.comand the company Simply Eartha, expressed her appreciation. It's wonderful that such a talented artist like René Marie has recorded the first tribute album to my mother, helping to keep her memory and spirit alive. These classic songs deserve to be heard and loved by all generations.
This brilliantly entertaining album burnishes René's reputation as the most provocative risk-taker among today's jazz divas. Featuring star turns by trombonist Wycliffe Gordon, trumpeter Etienne Charles and Australia's Adrian Cunningham on saxophone, clarinet and flute, I Wanna Be Evil opens with a cackle of mischief and features such Eartha gems as "Peel Me A Grape," "C'est Si Bon" and the holiday favorite - "Santa Baby." René's slow burn version is sure to become a new holiday favorite. Lesser-known barn burners like "I'd Rather Be Burned As A Witch," and "I Wanna Be Evil" immediately signal the melding of the spirits of these two audacious women. She closes with her haunting original, "Weekend." Produced by René, veteran producer/writer/programmer Mark Ruffin,I Wanna Be Evil features René's longtime band: Quentin Baxter (drums, percussion, washboard); Kevin Bales (piano); and Elias Bailey (bass). Baxter also co-produced.
Rene Marie ' I Wanna Be Evil' - New Album
FEATURED ON THE COVER OF JAZZ TIMES AND IN THE WALL STREET JOURNAL. René is winning acclaim for this new recording as seen on the December front cover of the national jazz publication Jazz Times. Other reviews include:
WALL STREET JOURNAL
Eartha Kitt was quite a character, and René Marie is too. Ms. Marie's latest album, "I Wanna Be Evil: With Love to Eartha Kitt " (Motéma), works wonderfully well not only as a swinging jazz record but as a reminder that Kitt, who died in 2008 at the age of 81, should not be forgotten...Ms. Marie showed herself to be a worthy successor to Kitt as a singer, one who demands a bigger platform to showcase her skills.- Jim Fusilli, Pop & Rock columnist
This brilliant...homage to her idol Eartha Kitt finds the singer in dazzling form... 4 stars.
NEW YORK TIMES
A shrewdly brassy jazz singer who never shies from the power of drama, Ms. Marie takes on a worthy subject with her new album, "I Wanna Be Evil."