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Hot Swing, Cool Jazz by Nancy Osborne

When is the last time you smiled or laughed? Research on the effects of smiling has shown that a smiling person is judged to be more pleasant, attractive, sincere, sociable, and competent than a non-smiling person. Laughter is considered by some to truly be the best medicine- no need for a prescription, no unpleasant aftertaste, no side effects, and best of all- it is FREE! Laughter also benefits the respiratory system, cardio-vascular, and immune systems and contributes to joviality, optimism and hope. Jazz vocalist Nancy Osborne just might make you do one or both of the above activities through music if given the chance with the CD entitled, Hot Swing, Cool Jazz.

That is not to say that the Kentucky born singer/actor does any type of comedy or silly music on the CD, but the energy of light fun and playfulness is definitely apparent and contagious. Even the CD cover has Osborne pictured with a big smile and an out-stretched arm inviting the listener to reflect the same emotion. Flip the CD over and there is Osborne laughing! These are two good indicators that the music in-between is going to be light and fun, which is exactly what it is, a light mixture of swing, cabaret, and pop that is designed to work-out the toes and the face muscles.

Osborne draws upon experiences with such bands as the Nelson Riddle Orchestra, Tex Beneke, Randy Van Horne, and most recently with Geo Valle’s Swing City Big Band and Johnny Vana’s Big Band Alumni, contributing to three CDs and a DVD of their Live from Las Vegas show. A successful acting career has also added to the arsenal of entertaining, some of Nancy’s TV career highlights include appearances on ER, General Hospital, Bob Newhart, and working on three different commercials with Martha Stewart. Her film career includes such blockbusters as APOLLO 13, Independence Day and Murder by Number. According to Osborne, "It makes me an entertainer. I can act out the song and feel it from my heart."

The CD opens with Osborne vocally smiling the melody of "I Love Being Here with You." What do I mean by vocally smiling? Adding little nuances such as laughing while singing, playful glissandos at the beginning and end of phrases, vocal growls, and an overtone of someone singing while smiling, one knows when talking to someone on the phone if the other person is talking while smiling, and one gets that same message with this piece and throughout the CD while listening to Osborne sing.

Backed by a swingin’ big band Osborne’s mezzo-soprano voice is clear and true to the style of the songs. The flow of the CD is very enjoyable and has a nice variance of styles. The songs are short in time, but not quality, the CD contains sixteen tracks!

The doctor has spoken; make sure to get the daily dose of the smile/laugh medicine. Besides, how can you resist something that make you appear more pleasant, attractive, sincere, sociable, and competent- and it's FREE! Nancy Osborne’s Hot Swing, Cool Jazz will help get the mood right to smile and laugh on any occasion.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Nancy Osborne
  • CD Title: Hot Swing, Cool Jazz
  • Genre: Big Band / Swing
  • Year Released: 2006
  • Record Label: Self Published
  • Rating: Four Stars
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