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Linda Ronstadt: Hummin’ to Myself

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Linda Ronstadt is no jazz singer. Nor has she ever professed or pretended to be. Ronstadt caught considerable critical heat a decade ago when she … Read More "Linda Ronstadt: Hummin’ to Myself"

Linda Ronstadt is no jazz singer. Nor has she ever professed or pretended to be. Ronstadt caught considerable critical heat a decade ago when she waded into the Great American Songbook with that trio of orchestral collections recorded with Nelson Riddle, and is sure to again earn grief for this gorgeously intimate collection of standards that find her in the comparatively spare accompaniment of, variously, pianists Alan Broadbent and Warren Bernhardt, guitarists Bob Mann and Larry Koonse, bassists Christian McBride and Trey Henry and drummers Lewis Nash and Peter Erskine.

The jazz cognoscenti, loaded for bear every time an artist dares step out of his or her prescribed box (witness recent attacks on noble crossover efforts by Aaron Neville, Elvis Costello and Van Morrison), will, no doubt, be vociferously wondering why the folks at Verve-duty-bound, they’d argue, to preserve and protect jazz’s ivory tower-have let a genre-hopper like Ronstadt across the drawbridge. The easy and obvious answer: because they realize how lucky they are to have her.

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