Yoko Noge

Yoko Meets John

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The John and Yoko heard on this live jazz/blues recording aren't John Lennon and Yoko Ono -- they're pianist/singer Yoko Noge and trombonist/singer John Watson, co-leaders of the Chicago-based sextet Jazz Me Blues (which is also the name of the label that released this CD in 1999). Performing at Chicago's Hot House, Noge and Watson (a graduate of the Count Basie band) share the vocal duties and provide humorous male/female duets on such familiar tunes as "I Want a Little Girl," Don Redman's "Cherry," and Blu Lu Barker's naughty "Don't You Feel My Leg." Though the latter has been recorded by numerous female artists, Jazz Me Blues (which also includes tenor saxman Sonny Seals, soprano saxophonist Clark Dean, bassist Tatsu Aoki, and drummer Phil Thomas) gives listeners a rare chance to hear it as a vocal duet. Noge isn't from Chicago originally -- she grew up in Osaka, Japan and sings with a noticeable Japanese accent, often doing so in a very ironic way. However, her voice really does have a bluesy quality, Japanese accent and all. Watson and Noge have a lot of fun on this good-natured and entertaining, if unremarkable, album. It's worth picking up.

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