Christopher Loudon

Christopher’s Contributions


05/20/16    Albums

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Patrick Williams

It’s hardly surprising that composer-arranger-conductor Patrick Williams’ big-band work is so grandly cinematic; over his half-century in show business he has scored more than five-dozen films, most famously 1979’s Breaking Away , which earned him an Oscar...


05/18/16    Albums

En Vie
Camille Bertault

Even if you don’t understand a word of French, the enormity of Camille Bertault’s gift is immediately, intoxicatingly evident. The Parisian singer-songwriter, still in her early 20s, began studying classical piano with her father at age 4, but quickly developed...


05/15/16    Albums

Susie Arioli

As its title suggests, Susie Arioli’s eighth studio release is all about fresh starts. Appropriately, it is the Montreal-based singer-songwriter’s first album-length outing without guitarist and musical alter ego Jordan Officer. Subbing on guitar is one...


05/10/16    Albums

The Theory of Joy
Ian Shaw

Great jazz singers, like great comedians, are masters of timing. That Ian Shaw is a virtuoso of both disciplines, balancing standup and concert gigs, speaks to the breadth of his genius and to the singularity of his style as a singer. It’s hardly surprising...


05/06/16    Albums

Live at Rosy's
Sarah Vaughan

Following a lengthy Following a lengthy fallow period, the late 1970s proved a particularly fertile time for Sarah Vaughan. In 1977 she signed with Norman Granz’s Pablo label and began a stellar series of studio albums. In May 1978, not long after the first...


05/02/16    Albums

One to One: Jane Harvey Sings Ellington
Jane Harvey

Surely the most underappreciated jazz vocalist of the past half-century, Jane Harvey boasted a résumé that included stints with Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington and Desi Arnaz but recorded infrequently as a leader. Harvey’s record sales were minuscule at best...


04/26/16    Albums

Moonshadow Dance
Rebecca Kilgore

Like Rebecca Kilgore, Ellen Vanderslice is a pillar of the Portland jazz community. Though an architect by trade, Vanderslice is also an accomplished (and remarkably prolific) composer, occasional singer and leader of a local quartet. The Cherry Pie Music...


04/18/16    Albums

Sing to the Sky
Emma Larsson

Listening to Emma Larsson, it’s hard not to be reminded of the young Nancy Wilson. The Swedish-born, New York-based singer, now three albums into what promises to be an impressive career, mirrors Wilson’s silken delivery and her sly interpretative sass...


04/12/16    Albums

Sings Verse and Chorus
Larry Carr

Though minor enough a player that he rates nary a footnote in James Gavin’s definitive Intimate Nights: The Golden Age of New York Cabaret , Larry Carr was widely admired by Manhattan’s cognoscenti. In his memoirs, impresario George Wein credits Carr as...


04/06/16    Albums

The Songbook Sessions: Ella Fitzgerald
Jane Monheit

Among vocal-jazz projects, surely the most ambitious and sublime is Ella Fitzgerald’s near-decade-long series of eight releases saluting giants of the Great American Songbook. Initiated by Norman Granz in 1956 to ignite his fledgling Verve label, the landmark...


04/04/16    Albums

Live in London
Peggy Lee

Peggy Lee claimed London was her favorite city. She traveled there often, first in 1961, regularly throughout the 1980s and for a final appearance at Royal Albert Hall in 1990. Most significant was a 1977 visit, resulting in back-to-back albums for Polydor...


03/19/16    Albums

Nicolas Bearde

Where jazz intersects soul, there are few more satisfying stylists than Nicolas Bearde, a richly impressive amalgam of Bill Withers and Billy Eckstine. The Nashville-bred vocalist is now 20 years into a dual career, balancing solo dates and recordings, released...


03/14/16    Albums

Balancing Act
Mike Holober

Judging from his stellar work with the WDR Big Band, HR Big Band, Gotham Jazz Orchestra and several other large ensembles, pianist-composer-arranger Mike Holober is well practiced in the art of weighing disparate musical parts to achieve a balanced whole...


03/08/16    Albums

Let's Get Lost
Cyrille Aimee

Speaking with JazzTimes two years ago, vocalist Cyrille Aimée explained why, viewing music as an essentially positive force, she purposefully focused on upbeat material. No sad songs, she insisted. That rule has at last been bent, if only slightly. Otherwise...


03/04/16    Albums

Dig Dis
Whitney Marchelle

Is Whitney Marchelle the Zelig of jazz? She seems a curious enigma—just try to find any personal information about her online—of indeterminate age, and appears to have released only one previous album, 2009’s Me, Marsalis & Monk . Yet she’s performed the...


02/29/16    Albums

Joyce Moreno & Kenny Werner

Nearly a half-century into one of the most respected careers in Brazilian jazz, singer-songwriter Joyce Moreno remains singularly magnificent at age 68. Her voice has grown deeper and richer, its chestnut luster as radiant as ever. Widely known as simply...

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About Christopher Loudon