Album of the Day
Portrait Of Carmen
Among the 20th century's most revered jazz vocalists, Carmen McRae recorded nearly 60 albums across four decades, and PORTRAIT OF CARMEN falls near the middle of that illustrious output. Recording sessions for the set, the singer's third for the Atlantic label, began in Los Angeles 50 years ago today, and capture soulful performances informed by the tumultuous changes in the air in 1967. McRae's mastery of phrasing (and occasional subtle irony) is brought to bear on 11 well-chosen tracks ranging from contemporary pop ("Elusive Butterfly"), standards ("Day By Day") and a pair of songs by Gene Di Novi, part of a team of top-flight arrangers and accompanists that also includes such greats as Benny Carter, Buddy Collette and Earl Palmer. On PORTRAIT OF CARMEN, McRae fills a broad musical canvas with passion and sophistication.