Carol Kidd - Tell Me Once Again - MusicWeb International
27 April 2011MusicWeb International
The plethora of young hopefuls trying to be jazz singers could learn a thing or two from Carol Kidd. She never goes to excess but is content to deliver songs so that you can hear the lyrics clearly and take in what they are saying. This is particularly true in Alfie, where she makes the words come alive in such a way that you realise how unusual a theme it has, with its references to the Golden Rule.
The songs are well chosen, mixing old standards with little-known pieces - like Moon Blue, which is not the more familiar Blue Moon but a Stevie Wonder composition. Guitarist Nigel Clark supplies a gentle bossa nova rhythm for this number. Carol and Nigel co-wrote the title-track, which is a delicate song well suited to Carol's slightly fragile voice (which nevertheless stays in tune). Singing with just a guitar as accompaniment can be dangerous, as the guitar may feel inadequate, but Nigel's sympathetic backing is all that Carol needs.
Many of the songs are wistful, and the duo's vulnerability suits this mood perfectly. This comes through especially in I Loves You Porgy, which Carol mixes with Bess, You is My Woman Now to make a touching medley.
Nigel has few opportunities for a solo, although he gets half a chorus in Moon River and The Shadow of Your Smile. This album is a chance for the duettists to tell the poignant stories in the songs. As Carol says: "We wanted every song to tell a story" and the CD succeeds in this aim. Most of the songs on the disc are ballads but there is no sense of sameness, as Carol's singing grabs your attention and holds it to the very last note. And the recording is nice and clear, without any danger of the guitar swamping the voice. The album lasts for only 46 minutes but it gives quality instead of quantity.
Related LinksCarol KiddNigel ClarkTell Me Once Again