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Patricia Barber- Nightclub
September 26, 2000
Original Release Date: September 26, 2000

Patricia Barber/Piano & Vocals, Charlie Hunter/Guitar, Michael Arnopol/Bass(5,9,10), Marc Johnson/Bass(1,2,3,7,8), Adam Cruz/Drums(4,5,6,9,10,11), Adam Nussbaum/Drums(1,2,3,7,8)

1. Bye Bye Blackbird |
2. Invitation
3. Yesterdays
4. Just For A Thrill
5. You Don't Know Me
6. Alfie
7. Autumn Leaves
8. Summer Samba
9. All Or Nothing At All
10. So In Love
11. Man & A Woman, A
12. I Fall In Love Too Easily

More and more I have come to appreciate female jazz vocals with a caberet touch, like Diana Krall. If done well, you could get something of an effect of Patricia Barber, a silent whispering that dashes through the dark and awakens a sleepy nightingale. Barber is a Chicago-born classical trained pianist, now deeply emerged in jazz vocal singing. "Nightclub" is her most satisfying album to date. For one thing, Barber has completely found her style. As the title suggests, Barber sucessfully recreates a lush nightclub atmosphere for us to sit back and relax with a lovely Bordeaux or Champagne in our hand. The recording is superb, with thanks to the immaculate Jim Anderson, engineering for the classic Tiger Okoshi album "Color of Soil."

Barber's piano playing is just expressive as her throaty voice. Demonstrated ostentatiously in a piano solo in "Bye Bye Blackbird," I must admit that hers is the most intriguing version of the song I have heard since the Miles Davis era. Also, in songs like "Just for a Thrill" and "Alfie," Barber shows us how to use her voice in the most subtle way possible yet still sounding good. Though partially disagreeing with some of the song choices she makes, the material ranges a wide spectrum, from Bossa Nova to ballad, with two Ray Charles tribute and homage to French Cinema ("A Man and a Woman"). The best song in the album is "Summer Samba." Barber's unique performance (with the help of Bill Evans'' veteran bassist Marc Johnson) outshines the Astrud Gilberto original and barely equalizes the recent Bebel Gilberto remake, making Barber's a distinguished accomplishment. Again, the only drawback is the mundane selection of the songs, which could get boring after awhile.

Extended Listening

-Diana Krall- When I Look In Your Eyes


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