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Terence Blanchard: Let’s Get Lost

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In this fine collection of Jimmy McHugh songs, Blanchard uses his rich trumpet tone and exquisite sense of harmonic proportion to create lyrical melodies in his improvisations. In straightforward solos like those on “I’m in the Mood for Love” and “Exactly Like You,” he keeps his mannerisms under control and makes them the seasoning, not the main course. In his long, slow exposition of “Lost in a Fog” he makes judicious use of his special effects to achieve the kind of ache the 1930s singer Jane Froman gave the song. The swoops, slurs, slides and half-valve effects that have often distracted from his storytelling are under control.

Blanchard hired four singers for this album. Diana Krall makes one appearance, Dianne Reeves, Jane Monheit and Cassandra Wilson two each, all with Blanchard’s obbligatos and solo interludes. Monheit’s girlishness is perfect for the innocence of “Too Young to Go Steady.” Blanchard’s trumpet whines may be commentary on the sentimentality of the lyrics. Monheit approximates them as she follows his solo into the second appearance of the bridge. She has fun with the time on “I Can’t Give You Anything but Love.”

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