Imani Winds: Josephine Baker: A Life of Le Jazz Hot!

Remembered mainly as a risqué entertainer from a more innocent era, Josephine Baker was in fact many things: activist, French Resistance operative, humanitarian and, yes, artist. In this sparkling jewel of an album, the classical-crossover quintet Imani Winds crafts a subtle biographical portrait. Two jazz-based suites capture the atmosphere of Baker’s Midwest childhood, the joie de vivre of her stage presence, and the resolve that pulled her through a lifetime of trying circumstances. Also present are three of the songs that made Baker famous, delivered impeccably by singer Rene Marie.