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Adonis Rose and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra Feat Cyrille Aimée: Petite Fleur (Storyville)

A review of the 10-song album from the orchestra and vocalist, focusing on the act of storytelling

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Adonis Rose And The New Orleans Jazz Orchestra Feat Cyrille Aimée: Petite Fleur
The cover of Petite Fleur by Adonis Rose And The New Orleans Jazz Orchestra Feat Cyrille Aimée

Petite Fleur is essentially a meditation on the ties that bind Crescent City art to French culture. Teaming up for 10 songs that cross styles and oceans while exploring that particular connection, the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra and French vocalist Cyrille Aimée make a perfect match, united in the act of storytelling.

Opening with a seductively swaying take on the title track—which, not coincidentally, NOLA native Sidney Bechet wrote during his time in France—Aimée and the ensemble get right to the heart of the matter. Then they float through the Michel Legrand-composed “What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?,” turn the Django Reinhardt-associated “Si Tu Savais” steamy, nod to Fats Domino’s style during “I Don’t Hurt Anymore,” and offer ballroom savoir faire with “In the Land of Beginning Again.”

Well-chosen wonders continue to emerge on the second half of the set—a stargazing look at “Crazy He Calls Me,” swinging stroll through “On a Clear Day (You Can See Forever),” R&B-inflected take on Jelly Roll Morton’s “Get the Bucket,” and up-tempo run through “Undecided”—and the program reaches its end on a brassy and boisterous performance of Aimée’s “Down.” With sharp execution of smart arrangements, a string of impressive soloists (saxophonists Ricardo Pascal and Ed Petersen, trumpeters Ashlin Parker and John Michael Bradford, trombonist Terrance Taplin), and a can’t-miss frontwoman selling the songs, everything lands just as it should. Petite Fleur speaks to Artistic Director and drummer Adonis Rose’s sure-handed helming of the NOJO, the entire band roster’s contributions in part(s) and sum, Aimée’s well-documented gifts, and a shared vision that brings them all together.

Learn more about Petite Fleur on Amazon & Apple Music!


NOJO: A Second Chance to Swing

Adonis Rose: To Swing Toussaint

Cyrille Aimée Is Moving On

Originally Published

Dan Bilawsky

Dan Bilawsky has been involved in jazz journalism for 15 years. His work has appeared in JazzTimes, JAZZed, and All About Jazz, among other outlets. In addition, he’s penned liner notes for artists on Red, Capri, HighNote/Savant, Ropeadope, and other respected imprints. A band director with 20 years of teaching experience, he holds degrees in music from Indiana University, the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College, and Five Towns College.