Napua Davoy

Until We Meet Again: Napúa Davoy Sings the Music of Andre Kondakov

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Quite often, one can easily assume that a jazz vocal date will contain some standards. The more predictable vocalists, unfortunately, insist on inundating listeners with the same old 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s standards and performing them the same old way; others are more adventurous in their choices of material. A singer with some guts and imagination won't necessarily stay away from Cole Porter, George Gershwin, or Irving Berlin, although he/she will also consider everyone from Horace Silver to Milton Nascimento to Sting fair game. But it's rare to find a jazz vocal album that contains nothing but original lyrics; Until We Meet Again is such a rarity. This good-to-excellent CD finds vocalist Napúa Davoy providing lyrics for the melodies of Russian jazz pianist Andrei Kondakov -- saxman Bobby Watson's "Simon Says" (which Davoy also provides lyrics for) and Davoy's own "A Little Time for Me" are the only melodies on the CD that Kondakov didn't write. With Kondakov on acoustic piano, Allen Won on soprano sax, Charnett Moffett on acoustic bass, and Lenny White on drums, Davoy delivers an album that is best described as post-bop with occasional R&B overtones. The expressive Davoy is a jazz improviser first and foremost and, yet, she brings a bit of R&B grit to some of Kondakov's funkier pieces (which include "Get on Up" and "Chance, Mr. Strangelove"). Her range is impressive; she is subtle and introspective on "Goodbye," "Noel," and "Love to Start My Day," but Davoy can also be a belter when it's appropriate. Until We Meet Again not only reminds us how talented a composer Kondakov is -- it also indicates that Davoy is well worth keeping an eye on.

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