When preparing her previous release, Lucky Girl, Jacqui Naylor invited 90 friends and fans to listen to 25 selections and vote on each, ultimately recording the top 15 tunes. Such democracy continues with Dead Divas Society, though less formally. As the puckishly morbid title suggests, Naylor’s intent is to pay tribute to departed singers who have influenced her. Its 15 tracks were recorded live at San Francisco’s Coast Recorders in front off a hand-selected audience of 150, all polled in advance for suggestions. The final tally of 14 divas (Peggy Lee is saluted twice) extends from Ella, Billie and Sarah to Cass Elliot, Amy Winehouse and, another display of Naylor’s impishness, Freddie Mercury and Luther Vandross.
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