In “Scrabble,” the penultimate track on Lorraine Feather’s latest, she dreams of whipping her opponent’s “Mensa fanny.” The sentiment is surely flippant, for no one as wickedly skilled as Feather at crafting cunning lyrics could possibility be poor at word games. As on her previous release, 2008’s terrific Language, Feather fills the album with guest artists who double as her tunesmiths. “Scrabble,” for instance, is based on Dick Hyman’s “Barrel of Keys.” Hyman not only arranged the new piece and provides piano accompaniment, but also challenged Feather to incorporate the name Dushka (a Hyman family friend) into the lyric. She does so, with Cole Porter panache.
Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.