State of Bliss

Courtenay Day

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State of Bliss Review

by Dave Nathan

Courtenay Day literally has her feet in two different but related domains of the entertainment industry. Trained as a dancer, she runs a ballet school and dance company. She also works in New York as a cabaret performer. The grace, style, and suppleness that are requisite for a successful dancer are evident in her interpretations of the familiar as well as the less commonplace material she has selected for her second album. Like the ballet dancer she is, Day floats over the music with a gentle, well-modulated voice. She also brings to her singing the subtle passion and vocal ability to act out the story imbedded in the lyrics. Day is ably supported by pianist/arranger Christopher Marlowe (a ubiquitous accompanist to cabaret singers), first-call bass player Steve LaSpina, John Redsecker on percussion, and Peter Sanders playing that essential mood-creating instrument for cabaret singers, the cello. The mellow, soothing ambience created by this instrument is effectively put to use on such cuts as the medley of "Get Here" and the John Lennon/Paul McCartney collaboration "I Will." While the emotions occasionally reach a high pitch of intensity, such as on "What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?" and "Take Me to the World," driven by high-drama pianism from Marlowe, most of this offering can best be described like the sound of the cello, soothing, sweet (but not saccharine), dulcet, and -- as on "Something Cool" -- a little wistful. State of Bliss is a welcome addition to the recorded literature of cabaret music, and is recommended.

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