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Dena DeRose: A Walk in the Park [Digipak]

Audio Samples

>Meditation
>All My Love
>How Deep Is the Ocean?
>Home (With You)
>All the Way
>Lonely Ones, The
>In the Glow of the Moon
>Imagine
>Walk in the Park, A (With James)
>I Could've Told You
>I Concentrate On You

Track List

>Meditation
>All My Love
>How Deep Is the Ocean?
>Home (With You)
>All the Way
>Lonely Ones, The
>In the Glow of the Moon
>Imagine
>Walk in the Park, A (With James)
>I Could've Told You
>I Concentrate On You

Album Remarks & Appraisals:

"Dena DeRose belongs to that select group of jazz artists known by the dual moniker of pianist/vocalist. Her peers include Patricia Barber, Diana Krall, Norah Jones, Patti Wicks, Shirley Horn, and Christine Hitt. Of this group, DeRose has the most muscular and assertive style. Her assertive piano playing perfectly balances her beautifully feminine voice. DeRose's new recording, A Walk in the Park, is her strongest offering yet.

Perfoming in the comfortable piano trio format, DeRose proves quite at home. Bassist Martin Wind and drummer Matt Wilson fill out a potent rhythm section, one that proves necessary to keep up with the athletic playing of the pianist. For A Walk in the Park, the singer has assembled a bit of an eclectic group of songs that range from Ellington's "The Lone Ones to John Lennon's iconic "Imagine. Also included are also several DeRose originals that prove her more a formidable composer than many of her peers.

The disc opens with Jobim's "Meditation, one of its lighter moments. DeRose's voice darts above the music, supported by her own deft comping. Her solo is double-fisted, logical, and swinging. She follows this with an old Al Jolson ballad, "All My Love, which she delivers in a thoroughly updated way. Wind and Wilson's accompaniment is unintrusive and essential. Things really pick up on the Irving Berlin standard "How Deep is the Ocean, a lesson on building drama into a performance piece. DeRose progressively moves the song from ballad to juggernaut, with Matt Wilson showing why he is in such demand as a drummer. DeRose's solo is angular and intelligent, full of block chords and blue notes. (Can you say Red Garland?)

Home (with You) is a DeRose ballad that is almost Shorter-esque in its pacing. It is the most effective ballad on the album. The same can be said for the upbeat instrumental, also an original, "A Walk in the Park (with James), dedicated to the late pianist and educator James Williams. DeRose and company burn the house down with this one. The most provocative piece is DeRose's take on "Imagine, untethered completely from the mooring used by Lennon and transformed into an interesting jazz standard.

There is much to like about A Walk in the Park. Of the many fine vocalist recordings that have recently been released, this one perhaps stands as the best." -AllAboutJazz

"Dena DeRose sings with emotion and musical accuracy. Her trio's sense of swing makes A Walk in the Park sparkle with hip inclinations that revel in their rhythmic delivery. While the album is moody for the most part, there's a deep feeling attached to this session. DeRose sings from the heart.

Breathy and hesitant, her vocal delivery takes hold of a slower ballad and allows it to linger. In several places this quality becomes tiresome. The singer/pianist is much better when she's animated, which fortunately is true of most of the session.

Wordless vocal interludes in unison with her up-tempo piano forays recall the magic formula that Tania Maria has developed into a science. With these exciting passages, DeRose moves animatedly to the beat of her trio's heart while appearing spontaneous.

"Imagine" provides a loping scene where the singer has an opportunity to build her interpretation from cool and distant to something more passionate. She prefers, however, to leave it that way. Cole Porter would call it blasé. She adds Moog synthesizer on the trio's portrayal of "I Concentrate on You," which starts out split between the left and right channels. As the sounds come together, her Moog effects color the scene with a light contemporary air. The result is unique, but remains cool and distant.

Her composition "A Walk in the Park" provides a lovely musical stroll that emphasizes the trio's swinging appearance. Serving as the album's high point, this instrumental number bounces gracefully with fresh keyboard attacks that drive spontaneously. DeRose and her two musical partners give her audience an effective dose of straight-ahead jazz talk, done up with respect for tradition." -AllAboutJazz

"Dena DeRose sings with emotion and musical accuracy. Her trio's sense of swing makes A Walk in the Park sparkle with hip inclinations that revel in their rhythmic delivery. While the album is moody for the most part, there's a deep feeling attached to this session. DeRose sings from the heart.

Breathy and hesitant, her vocal delivery takes hold of a slower ballad and allows it to linger. In several places this quality becomes tiresome. The singer/pianist is much better when she's animated, which fortunately is true of most of the session.

Wordless vocal interludes in unison with her up-tempo piano forays recall the magic formula that Tania Maria has developed into a science. With these exciting passages, DeRose moves animatedly to the beat of her trio's heart while appearing spontaneous.

"Imagine" provides a loping scene where the singer has an opportunity to build her interpretation from cool and distant to something more passionate. She prefers, however, to leave it that way. Cole Porter would call it blasé. She adds Moog synthesizer on the trio's portrayal of "I Concentrate on You," which starts out split between the left and right channels. As the sounds come together, her Moog effects color the scene with a light contemporary air. The result is unique, but remains cool and distant.

Her composition "A Walk in the Park" provides a lovely musical stroll that emphasizes the trio's swinging appearance. Serving as the album's high point, this instrumental number bounces gracefully with fresh keyboard attacks that drive spontaneously. DeRose and her two musical partners give her audience an effective dose of straight-ahead jazz talk, done up with respect for tradition." -AllAboutJazz

"Dena DeRose belongs to that select group of jazz artists known by the dual moniker of pianist/vocalist. Her peers include Patricia Barber, Diana Krall, Norah Jones, Patti Wicks, Shirley Horn, and Christine Hitt. Of this group, DeRose has the most muscular and assertive style. Her assertive piano playing perfectly balances her beautifully feminine voice. DeRose's new recording, A Walk in the Park, is her strongest offering yet.

Perfoming in the comfortable piano trio format, DeRose proves quite at home. Bassist Martin Wind and drummer Matt Wilson fill out a potent rhythm section, one that proves necessary to keep up with the athletic playing of the pianist. For A Walk in the Park, the singer has assembled a bit of an eclectic group of songs that range from Ellington's "The Lone Ones to John Lennon's iconic "Imagine. Also included are also several DeRose originals that prove her more a formidable composer than many of her peers.

The disc opens with Jobim's "Meditation, one of its lighter moments. DeRose's voice darts above the music, supported by her own deft comping. Her solo is double-fisted, logical, and swinging. She follows this with an old Al Jolson ballad, "All My Love, which she delivers in a thoroughly updated way. Wind and Wilson's accompaniment is unintrusive and essential. Things really pick up on the Irving Berlin standard "How Deep is the Ocean, a lesson on building drama into a performance piece. DeRose progressively moves the song from ballad to juggernaut, with Matt Wilson showing why he is in such demand as a drummer. DeRose's solo is angular and intelligent, full of block chords and blue notes. (Can you say Red Garland?)

Home (with You) is a DeRose ballad that is almost Shorter-esque in its pacing. It is the most effective ballad on the album. The same can be said for the upbeat instrumental, also an original, "A Walk in the Park (with James), dedicated to the late pianist and educator James Williams. DeRose and company burn the house down with this one. The most provocative piece is DeRose's take on "Imagine, untethered completely from the mooring used by Lennon and transformed into an interesting jazz standard.

There is much to like about A Walk in the Park. Of the many fine vocalist recordings that have recently been released, this one perhaps stands as the best." -AllAboutJazz

Album Reviews:

Down Beat (p.72) - 3 stars out of 5 - "DeRose is a first-class pianist....With spot-on pitch and articulation, she crafts inventive investigations of famous and obscure corners of the American Songbook."

JazzTimes (p.106) - "A consistently imaginative and intelligent performer who seems to spend all of her professional time stationed at the crossroads of class and creativity..."

Album Notes

Personnel: Dena DeRose (vocals, piano, Moog synthesizer); Dena DeRose; Martin Wind (bass instrument); Matt Wilson (drums).

Audio Mixer: Katsuhiko Naito.

Recording information: Systems Two Studios, Brooklyn, NY (09/25/2004-09/26/2004).

Photographers: Dena Katz; Jimmy Katz.

Equally talented as a pianist and singer, Dena DeRose performs a wide range of material on A Walk in the Park. Possibly the biggest surprise is the obscure and touching Al Jolson ballad "All My Love." Other highlights include a swinging "How Deep Is the Ocean," her revival of Duke Ellington's obscure "The Lonely Ones," and a fine rendition of "I Concentrate On You." A couple burners would have added variety to this generally satisfying effort, which finds Dena DeRose in subtle but expressive form while accompanied by tasteful playing from bassist Martin Wind and drummer Matt Wilson. ~ Scott Yanow



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