Whoever proffered the career advice “don’t let ’em see you sweat” never knew Ann Hampton Callaway. For nearly two decades, the multitalented Chicagoan has willingly-gleefully, even-let the perspiration glow while doing anything and everything necessary to get herself the attention she warrants. Though she’s a Tony Award-nominated actress and an ace composer, the world prefers to pigeonhole Callaway as a cabaret singer. Sure, she can deliver an evening of bouncy show tunes, vaguely risque novelties and torchy ballads with the best of them (rivaling even the great Barbara Cook in her ability to lift even the most jaded club crowd to its feet). But as so much of the Callaway canon, including her latest, Slow (her first for Shanachie) so ably demonstrates, she’s also a superbly intelligent, singularly creative pop-jazz stylist who can stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the likes of Streisand, Ronstadt, Shirley Horn and Dianne Reeves.
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