Kathy Kosins

To the Ladies of Cool

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Kathy Kosins is the rare jazz vocalist who chooses to salute earlier singers by mostly picking less familiar songs they recorded while also putting her individual stamp on them. Pianist Tamir Hendelman, a brilliant accompanist on some of her earlier recordings, provided the arrangements, and the talented cast includes guitarist Graham Dechter, multi-reed player Steve Wilkerson, drummer Bob Leatherbarrow (who doubles on vibes), and trumpeter/fl├╝gelhornist Gilbert Castellanos. Kosins has a bit of an R&B flavor in her alto voice, crisp enunciation, and the ability to swing, as best demonstrated in the breezy take of "Nightbird" and the bluesy late-night flavor of "Don't Wait Up for Me," along with her shimmering setting of "November Twilight." Kosins' sassy, playful side is on display in Duke Ellington's World War II-era "Kissing Bug" and in the hip lyric she wrote for Johnny Mandel's tasty "Hershey Bar," renamed "Hershey's Kisses." One obscurity that she rescues from the archive of forgotten gems is the Henry Mancini/Bobby Troup composition "Free and Easy," showcasing Hendelman and Dechter in top form as well.

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