The subtitle that Schoolkids gave Kathy Kosins' debut album, All in a Dream's Work, was A Collection of New Standards -- a lofty, exaggerated subtitle, to be sure. When you're putting out a collection of mostly new, previously unrecorded material by an unknown singer, calling the songs "new standards" is incredibly presumptuous and amounts to excessive hype. But while All in a Dream's Work isn't full of songs that became well-known standards, it's a decent, if unremarkable, debut that ranges from Blue Note-ish hard bop to R&B/pop-influenced quiet storm offerings. The only song on the album that can honestly be called a standard is "Four," which was credited to Miles Davis but is said to have been written by Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson -- most of the other tunes were co-written by Kosins. While "Man of My Dreams" exemplifies her quiet storm side, "I Can't Change You" and "Lucky Guy" are the type of hard-swinging bop items you would have expected to hear on a Blue Note session in the late 1950s or early '60s. If you took away Kosins' expressive vocals and let the songs be heard as instrumentals, it would be easy to picture them on an old Art Blakey, Hank Mobley, or Horace Silver date. This CD demonstrated that while Kosins couldn't be considered a composer of standards in 1995, she was a competent artist who was worth keeping an eye on.
All in a Dream's Work Review
by Alex Henderson