Feel The Rhythm

Jazz 'M Up CD 360


"All Or Nothing At All," "Under The Moon And Over The Sky," "Turn Around," "Sunshine Of Your Love," "Feel The Rhythm," "Moon And Sand," "Fragile," "Luiza," "Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing," "Dreams Of A Tango."

Daria is a San Francisco Bay area singer and composer, and this album shows her in great form. Her intention, as stated in her liner notes, was to bring together some of the many different styles from the vast richness and diversity of Jazz. She and her cohorts took Latin, Brazilian, and world rhythms and fused them with Jazz and pop sounds. I'd say she succeeds quite well.

The CD opens with a very original and dynamic version of "All Or Nothing At All" - the group is crisp and tight, featuring electric bass and keyboards that do NOT sound like a relic of the '70s, as well as strong rhythms (including the great Alex Acuna on percussion) and the soaring alto sax of Mac Russo. Daria grabbed me with vocals that brought to mind another talented San Francisco singer, Ann Dyer.

Elsewhere on the album I also heard the influence of Flora Purim, but mostly Daria is her own woman with a strong, clear voice, a great vocal and emotional range, and lots of feeling throughout. Most of the album has a Latin influence, including Samba, Rhumba, and Bossa numbers, and an Afro-Brazilian feel that's quite infectious. "Luiza" is a Jobim ballad beautifully sung in Portuguese. Daria also gives an unusually slow reading to the 1960s Cream hit "Sunshine Of Your Love," and pulls it off to such an extent that I'd call it a highlight of the album. Her treatment of Stevie Wonder's "Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing" follows the original more closely without being just another cover - there's a fun cha-cha groove and a cappella harmonies to begin and end the track. Daria also composed 3 original songs for the date, providing mid-tempo material to nicely balance the above-mentioned swingers and ballads.

All in all, a recommended CD featuring a strong woman's voice, a nice range of material and moods, creative arrangements, fine musicianship, and solid production values.</

by Howard Feldstein