Pace, if used to its fullest, can be a powerful tool for a vocalist. If too upbeat, the pace denies the spin eloquence. If too passive, many times a valium effect takes hold of the audience. In other words, delivery and arrangement are very familiar bedfellows. Vickie Burns, in her 2003 release Siren Song by Merrymaid Productions, has the glue to mix pace and sway.
Going off the mike for a moment, one noticeable observation is pianist Leonard Thompson’s contribution to the project. He stabilizes the many roads Ms. Burns exhausts, from scat to classic moods. Justifying this statement is his musicianship on Miles Davis’ "So What." His key manipulation has not overcast her vocal stir. Nice effort!
The one pure, Burn’s original piece on the project is the title cut "Siren Song" as her lyrical delivery set the mode for the spin. Ms. Burns offers a velvety cunning to her execution. Midway through the studio performance, Kenny Brooks’ sax takes this piece to a new level of cool. Enjoy his blessing on this arrangement.
Ms Burns’ pace on some streams of the music sheet are highly creative, but not enough to hinder the recording on Jack King’s "How Am I to Know." The original feel of the song is not comprised, simply enhanced.
The Elvira comes out in Ms. Burns’ rendition of ‘Witchcraft," but what one takes with them is the string sway of bassist John Wiitala. His sax is a wonderful foundation to the arrangement. The pace, again, is dramatic near the close, the feeling is there.
Vickie Burns can control the room; no concerns there. With the impressive musicians behind her, the disc has solid merit. The more one push-n-plays this music sheet, the more potential is forecasted. This is a siren’s future that jazz will recon with!