Harold Arlen is one of the most widely recognized composers from the 20th century; and this collection of 12 of his best known songs, beautifully arranged by Bob Ojeda, is brought to life through the enchanting voice of Anne Burnell.
The Burnells (Anne and husband, Mark) are a well known duet on the Chicago Blues scene. They have been performing together for over 12 years and their most recent recording together has been critically acclaimed.
Ms. Burnell's voice captures the mood and tone of each one of these blues-inspired songs with smoldering attitude and silky smooth style that creates an easy, yet dynamic, relationship with the band. Combined with Ojeda's jazzy arrangements, an environment is created that is charged with time-transcending fire and flair.
The disc opens with the title track in which a sultry, yet punchy, atmosphere is set and Anne's voice comes on sassy and bold. The large sound of the band embraces her, catches and reflects her glow, but doesn't get in her way. Continuing on this air of feistiness, "A Woman's Prerogative" is equally packed with spunk and swings the listener into submission.
This woman has timeless elegance and refined attitude which gives her an excellent presence. "Stormy Weather," though written in 1933, is fully alive and present and soaked with raw soul and emotion.
The outstanding solos on this CD are also commanding and the more listens, the better, as the listener is able to fully absorb the essence that gives this entire collection a core-tapping classic appeal.