Friday, November 5, 2010

Day 70: Flora Purim "Perpetual Emotion" & Dorthry Dandridge "Smooth Operator"

It seems like yesterday that I reached 60 and the last set of samplers and now here we are at Day 70. The sampler will come out tomorrow, obviously I'm getting a super late start today. I wish I had something profound to say about 70 days and almost 150 CDs. The whole thing still would fit on a 32g iPod Touch. Not much room left for apps, though.

Flora Purim
Perpetual Emotion

This was the kind of half way in between way of doing the 'advanced copy.' Not a special sleeve, a regular jewel case with no artwork and a backing that simply pitched the artist. Not that it worked, because even with the notes linking her to 'straight jazz' performers, I was convinced I was going to have to sit through another 'adult contemporary' fusion CD. And I was not ready for that. But instead, she's a modern swing singer from Brazil, which occasionally shines through. Especially on the Brazilian flavored Saudade. And Crystal Silence. Alright, so there's a lot of Brazilian influence on the CD. Of course, I don't have any liner notes so I have no idea what that means or what the collection represents.

I have a love/hate thing with singers. For the most part I have no need for them or interest. But then, torch singers seriously do something for me. This album, in that regard, has a lot of ballads and easy swing and Latin pieces.

They're all songs that I don't know. I don't know if that means they're all original or if I just don't know them.

You don't get many drum solos on vocal albums. This is a pretty ragin' one at that.

The album actually moves from various band line ups, from a big band, Latin group, or solo guitar for a Brazilian ballad that closes the album.

Dorthry Dandridge
Smooth Operator

Before the movie came out, our store didn't carry any Dorthy Dandridge. After the movie we had a variety of samplers like this available. Of course, I was the buyer for the section and I didn't stock her not because she was 'unmarketable,' but rather because I had no idea who she was. I may or may not have been pitched CDs with her before the movie, I just don't know that I noticed. But after the movie, I got promos.

I never actually watched the movie, so I still know really very little about her. In fact I wasn't sure what kind of singer she would be. For those in the same bubble as me, she manages a strong yet soft tone in her voice that's very seducing. The mastering and recording is really clean for its age. It's really very beautiful singing, if you're into that kind of thing. If you listen closely she has that 'conveyor belt' vibrato that I've always found weird. But it's subtle here and doesn't intrude unless you focus on I can't stop doing right now...

This is hitting all the right buttons, about the only jazz ballad missing that hypnotizes me when sung by a breathy singer is Someone to Watch Over Me. But instead I get How Long Has This Been Going On, Body & Soul, I've Got a Crush on You and The Nearness of You. All done with a sweet breathy voice that's recorded so that she sounds like she's singing it in your ear (of course, I'm wearing headphones). I guess I would be extra late to the party at this point to 'discover' Dandridge, but she does have a really good voice.

I kind of wanted to be snarky about her absence before the movie and how we all pretended that we were into her all along afterward. But I really didn't know who she was, and I was the one who decided (for the most part) what we carried in the jazz section. So she was ignored because I didn't know who she was. But honestly, there are so many stories in jazz, how can you know them all? I mean, just look back on the last 70 days and the artists that have come up, Red Rodney, Buddy Rich...I love jazz stories and I collect them as much as I collect jazz and there are just so many, someone is going to come across an amazing jazz story before you, and they may have Halle Berry to do a movie.

Of course after leaving the store I got to be familiar with her through Carmen Jones since I spent a short period studying Otto Prelinger. Which I promptly forgot until I had to Google to check and make sure it was Halle Berry that played Dandridge in the movie.

And that's the other side of it, I just can't know all the jazz stories out there, and the ones I do learn I often forget.

Dandridge's Smooth Operator is a little saucier than the Sade song. It really manages to walk the line between 'saucy' and 'campy.'

No comments:

Post a Comment