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Miles Donahue: Standards, Vol. 4: Embraceable You *

Album Notes

Personnel includes: Miles Donahue; Robin McElhatten (vocals); Fred Hirsch (piano); Jerry Bergonzi (tenor saxophone).

The fourth in Miles Donahue's four CD Standards series holds its own against the other three. Donahue, who is featured on alto, tenor, and trumpet, contributed two originals to this set (his only two compositions among the 32 songs) and as usual modernizes the other six selections. Robin McElhatten takes vocals on three of the numbers (including an ironic version of "Smile"), and the three rhythm sections (with Kevin Hays, Bruce Barth, or Kenny Werner on piano all in fine form) are excellent. One sometimes wonders why such songs as "Dream," "Smile," and "Apple Blossom Time" have to be given complex chords that make the tunes sound a bit downbeat despite the lyrics, but this method grows in interest with each listen. ~ Scott Yanow


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