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Nicki Parrott: Dear Blossom (Arbors)

Review of album from bassist/singer paying tribute to the singular vocalist Blossom Dearie

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Cover of Nicki Parrott album Dear Blossom
Nicki Parrott album Dear Blossom

Few, if any, contemporary jazz singers can match the recording prolificacy of Nicki Parrott: close to 30 albums (many for Japan’s Venus label) in less than 15 years, including tributes to mentor Les Paul, Doris Day, Peggy Lee, Nat King Cole, the Carpenters and, just released overseas, Burt Bacharach. Here the indefatigable Australian salutes Blossom Dearie, a task more difficult than it may seem.

Anyone who’s heard even a single Dearie track knows the unforgettable voice: that sweet, childlike mew. But underlying that seemingly innocent purr, and essential to the definition of her genius, was a slyness that could reveal itself as playful, coy, smirking or sardonic.

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