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Diane Schuur: Music Is My Life

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Diane Schuur performs with poise and panache, sparked by her trademark octave-leaping embellishments on this album dedicated to Frank Sinatra. Oddly, she sings only a few of his hits, her warmly rich voice perfect for “Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered,” “I Only Have Eyes for You” and “You’d Be So Nice to Come Home To.”

The musical mix ranges from an a cappella vocal on “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” and an instrumental trio rendition of “Nardis” to a full octet on “Good Morning Heartache.” The latter is a strong reading by Nino Tempo on tenor sax, Jeff Clayton on alto sax, Marcus Printup on trumpet, Ira Napis on trombone, and Dean Parks on guitar, plus Alan Broadbent on piano, Chuck Berghofer on bass, and John Guerin on drums.

Schuur plays piano on only three of the 10 tracks, acoustic on an all-scat treatment of “Invitation” and an instrumental-trio version of “Nardis,” with a switch to electric for the title track. The remaining compositions gain Broadbent’s finesse, teamed alternately with bassists Berghofer or Roger Hines and drummers Guerin, Larance Marable, and David Gibson. Emil Hines plays vibes on three songs.