Jimmy Van Heusen wrote over 120 hit songs during a half-century period including quite a few tunes made famous by Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra. Many of his compositions are still well-known today. Some of the selections on Rebecca Kilgore's Jump tribute album The Music of Jimmy Van Heusen include "I Thought About You," "Here's That Rainy Day," "It Could Happen to You," "Like Someone in Love" and "Darn That Dream." When it comes to interpreting vintage songs and adding light swing and subtle improvising, few are in Kilgore's league. Her cheerful voice, influenced by Maxine Sullivan and Rosemary Clooney while still sounding quite personal, is well showcased on 13 of these 17 songs. She revives such obscurities as "My Heart Is a Hobo," "Chicago Style," "Walking Happy" and, in a joyous vocal duet with bassist Nicki Parrott, "Life Is So Peculiar." Pianist Keith Ingham arranged all but two of the songs and is the musical director of a quartet also including the cool-toned clarinetist Bob Reitmeier, trombonist Dan Barrett (who switches to cornet on two numbers) and bassist Parrott. Their treatments of Van Heusen's songs are tasteful, melodic and consistently delightful.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow