Masha Bijlsma

Lebo

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On this CD, singer Masha Bijlsma (who is from Holland) comes across as a passionate folk-pop singer dipping her toes into the jazz waters. Backed by a European rhythm section (pianist Ge Bijvoet sounds most comfortable on the more pop-oriented ballads) and assisted by American tenor saxophonist Bob Malach on some songs, Bijlsma is best on slower material where her haunting voice is most effective. When she remakes such jazz standards as "Work Song," "The Way You Look Tonight" (the arrangement and her interpretation are surprisingly dark considering the song's lyrics), and Abbey Lincoln's "Long As You're Living," she sounds derivative and a bit out of place. Although her interest in jazz is admirable, Bijlsma gives one the impression that she should be working in performance art and singing mostly original folk songs.

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