Dream of Life

Carmen McRae

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Dream of Life Review

by Scott Yanow

This 1998 CD features singer Carmen McRae late in her career, after recording her notable Thelonious Monk tribute but before cutting her final album, a set of Sarah Vaughan-associated songs. Joined by the WDR Big Band and performing arrangements by John Clayton, McRae is in fine form on a wide-ranging program. Among the better selections are "In Walked Bud," "For All We Know," "I Didn't Know What Time It Was" and "You're a Weaver of Dreams"; on the latter, McRae accompanies herself on piano. Pianist Eric Gunnison is a major asset in the ensembles and on "Miss Brown to You" both Jon Eardley and a 20-year-old Roy Hargrove have trumpet solos. A rare opportunity to hear McRae accompanied by such a large orchestra.

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