If You Could See Me Now
1. Ain't Got Nothin' But The Blues [mp3]
2. Just One Of Those Things
3. He Was Too Good To Me [mp3]
4. I Had The Craziest Dream
5. Going To Chicago
6. Girl From Ipanema
7. If You Could See Me Now [mp3]
8. I Wish I Knew
9. Born To Be Blue [mp3]
10. Everything I Love
11. Face I Love
12. How About You
14. Who Cares
Becca Duran (vocal); Jay Thomas (trumpet, flugelhorn, tenor & soprano sax); George Mitchell (B3 organ); Chas "Vineet" Davidson (guitar); Dan Marcus (trombone); Jon Wikan (drums)
Recorded on March 11th & 12th, 2001
For those of you unfamiliar with vocalist Becca Duran, let this CD be an introduction. It features her singing choice standards with a cooking band. All are straight ahead, swinging selections plus a bonus of one Brazilian tune.
When you listen to this CD note Becca's natural affinity for the blues. She does it without any over-the-top flamboyant licks. Her blues phrasing is sure footed and on the mark without being contrived. Becca swings hard and she never does a song the same way twice. She takes so many chances ... melodic alterations and rhythmic variations all happen the split second they are delivered. That's flying by the seat of your pants, and to me that's jazz!
The Music: Ain't Got Nothin' But the Blues: Becca does some very slick intervallic skips that made us all drop our jaws listening to the playbacks. Just One of Those Things: This is an up-tempo swinger and Becca flies along nicely at this pace. He Was Too Good to Me is a song that could have been written for Becca... When Becca sings a lyric I'm a believer. I Had the Craziest Dream: is an example of the swinging, last minute phrasing Becca can create. Notice the out chorus cooks with abandon. Going to Chicago: Becca's sound and interpretation is firmly in the blues tradition, sweet and tart. The guitar solo is a gas! Charles Davidson can definitely play the blues. The Girl from Ipanema (Moca de Ipanema) is sung in Portuguese. The changes have been altered plus there are several modulations and a vamp section added. I would like to acknowledge Eliane Elias for inspiring me to write this arrangement. If You Could See Me Now: I can really hear Becca's ear at work on this song with lots of beautiful alterations to the melody. I love it! I Wish I Knew has Becca swinging in a medium tempo groovewith rhythmic and melodic phrasing. Born to be Blue: Becca sings with some blues inspired asides from Dan Marcus' funky trombone. Everything I Love: This is a very hip, lesser-known Cole Porter tune that Becca loves to perform. The Face I Love is a tune in ¾ time. Becca floats like a butterfly over the turbulent and complex polyrhythmic drumming of Jon Wikan. How About You is a cute standard that is interesting harmonically and was taken at a nice clip. Becca hams it up a little and her phrases dance along in a very sprightly fashion. Travelin' Light is a song associated with Billy Holiday. Becca gives an ironic quality to her rendition that illuminates the lyric. Who Cares features the "Rock of Gibraltar" of this whole session, George Mitchell on Hammond B3 organ. George has been Diana Ross' accompanist for twenty years, when he is not relaxin' at home in Portland, Oregon. --- Jay Thomas
--- Vocalist Becca Duran (www.beccaduran.com) has toured and performed in the United States, Canada and Japan. She opened the new Four Seasons Hotel in Maui and has been a popular headliner at numerous festivals. She has made guest appearances on five CDs and this CD is her 3rd under her name.
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"If You Could See Me Now" REVIEWS
By Jim Santella, Cadence Magazine - January 2002
"If you Could See Me Now" features a classy singer with veteran chops and a storyteller's manner. Becca Duran tells of the time during her teenage years that Julie London heard her sing and remarked, "You ought to be a singer." Those words seem to have offered more than mere encouragement, for Duran carries the same kind of persuasive delivery through her performance. Crystal-clear lyric interpretations and a blues singer's expression combine successfully with her impressive scat singing. In unison with tenor saxophone or guitar, her scatting brings another instrument to the session. Hammond B3 organ, guitar and drums provide a solid accompaniment. The timbres match her fresh voice quality in mood. This is a swinging session from a strong vocalist with stellar accompaniment.