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Dianne Reeves: That Day

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In today’s crowded field of jazz singers, Dianne Reeves is an anomaly. More of a throwback to the glory days of Dakota Staton and Terri Thornton, Reeves’ pliable, throaty contralto has memorably essayed songs of family, love, fear and hope with a singular sound equal parts R&B colorations and jazzy swing. Creating her own niche, Reeves’ stylings didn’t bring her true jazz props until her major move in ’96, the sublimely swinging big band session, The Grand Encounter. Straight outta the ’60s jazz chanteuse school, the record presaged a new phase of artistic evolution for the vocalist. With That Day, Reeves grandly fulfills the prophecy. Buoyed by the roiling turbulence served up by a group of veteran musicians that includes Mulgrew Miller, Oscar Brashear and producer Terri Lyne Carrington, Reeves positively soars, wafting warm, vital currents of fresh air into a stuffy collection of R&B, pop, jazz and MOR golden moldies. From the sweet nakedness of “Twelfth Of Never” to the coyly flirtatious “Exactly Like You” to “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”‘s existential dread, That Day is an enthrallingly intimate commune with Reeves’ heart and soul.