Mary Ann Moore

Good for What Ails Ya

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It never ceases to amaze how much good jazz comes from areas such as Colorado, performed by jazz artists without the benefit of contracts with major -- or even large or small independent -- labels. Such is the case with jazz singer Mary Ann Moore, who has released her second self-produced album of standards and traditional pop material. Not only is Moore a fine interpreter of song, she brings outstanding musicians into the studio to complement her smoky, romantic delivery of these classic tunes. Their presence makes this album attractive not only for the vocals but also for the solos that the instrumentalists contribute and the interplay between instrument and voice. That most of the players have previously worked with Moore is clearly a major reason why they fit together so well and with such admirable results. On a smoky "Ruby," Rich Chiaraluce not only has a lengthy and imaginative flute solo, but weaves the instrument into Moore's vocalizing. On "Little Boy," it's the piano of Andy Weyl that sweeps Moore along at a fast pace, with solid drum and bass breaks by Paul Romaine and Mark Diamond, respectively, underscoring Moore's scatting. Moore's deep, husky voice is made for such ballads as "I'm Glad There Is You," creating the sensation of intimacy described by the lyrics. Chiaraluce makes another impressive appearance, this time on tenor sax. His improvised lines below Moore's repetition of the title line are novel and ear-catching. On a hip "Slappin' the Cakes on Me," naturally it's Diamond's walking bass that is spotlighted. And so it goes, track after track, these musicians producing one fine performance after another for a generous offering of more than an hour's worth of good, well done music. Recommended.

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