Cynthia Felton handles the Nancy Wilson classics with kid gloves for a winning release!
Brent Black / www.criticaljazz.com
I like Nancy Wilson...who doesn't? Problem here is that even with an all star line up that includes Ernie Watts, Jeff "Tain" Watts and Patrice Rushen the release is somewhat "predictable" yet in a good way. Arrangements are solid and with other cameos from Robert Hurst, Wallace Roney and John Beasley the instrumental prowess on this release is beyond reproach and that may be the problem. No new ground is cut, no new lyrical paths are forged and the release while beautiful is somewhat like chewing gum as the flavor leaves quickly and when it is over you don't remember much.
The more soulful edge is a nice twist so Felton doesn't necessarily play it as straight as you would think but...the possibilities here were huge. Cynthia Felton has a polished style, phrasing that is on point and the ability to bring you into a vocal as she does her own thing. Tunes such as "A Sleepin' Bee" along with "West Coast Blues" and "I Wish You Love" are banged out with style and a flair that is uniquely Felton's...But I wanted more.
Tracks: Swing Low Sweet Chariot; The Old Country; Dearly Beloved; Save Your Love For Me; A Sleepin' Bee; Only The Young; West Coast Blues; Guess Who I Saw Today; Never Will I Marry; The Masquerade Is Over; I Wish You Love.