Album Remarks & Appraisals:
Hyman has mastered the great American songbook, making him a seamless accompanist to the young vocalist.
The Jazz Times
One of the unique joys of jazz is how often, and how seamlessly, cross-generational artists mix. The May-December pairing of vocalist Heather Masse and legendary pianist Dick Hyman is a fine example. Across 10 standards, Masse exhibits impeccable phrasing and a lush sound that suggests the sensuousness of Sophie Milman shot through with somber, Sarah Vaughan threads. She has an enticing ability to float above each tune, her flight patterns favoring lazy circles and gentle roils, free of dramatic soars or swoops.
Personnel: Dick Hyman (piano); Heather Masse (vocals).
Audio Mixers: Dick Hyman; Heather Masse; Mike Badalamenti.
Recording information: Audio Images Recording, Bradenton, FL.
Photographer: Christopher Bunn.
Heather Masse, part of the Canadian folk duo Wailin' Jennys, teams up with jazz pianist and educator Dick Hyman for a romantic set of standards. Masse and Hyman initially met during an appearance on the radio show A Prairie Home Companion in 2010, performing "I Got It Bad and That Ain't Good," which is included on this set. In a continuation comparable to that first performance together, Lock My Heart is just Masse's voice and Hyman's piano. Over the course of his 60-year career, Hyman has mastered the great American songbook, making him a seamless accompanist to the young vocalist. Masse gained familiarity with these tunes at an early age from her mother, who was a pianist, but she is not a traditional jazz singer, which makes her interpretations of these classics all the more interesting. The majority of tunes on Lock My Heart are standards written by the likes of Rodgers & Hart, George & Ira Gershwin, Billy Strayhorn, Duke Ellington, and Kurt Weill, and to her credit, Masse penned two tracks that fit in neatly with the rest of the program: "If I Called You" and "Morning Drinker." Audiophiles should note that this release is available as a Hybrid Super Audio CD. ~ Al Campbell
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