She is as soulful as Sarah Vaughan, as smooth and mellow as Dianne Reeves and comes equipped with a fighting spirit as passionate as Nina Simone’s. She is fire and ice, earth and water, innocent and sage. Yet, among the world’s great vocal-jazz practitioners, Elisabeth Kontomanou remains perhaps the least known on this side of the Atlantic. In 2006, she earned an enormous international hit with Waitin’ for Spring, her third album as leader, but failed to penetrate the collective American jazz psyche as deeply as she deserved. Waitin’ for Spring marked the French-born singer’s first attempt at recording her own songs.
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