Acoustic guitar and voice. Pretty straight as far as my memory of the proper song goes. [more inside]
Rehearsing some totally new Gershwin torch songs. Well, not new for the Gershwins. They're pretty dead. New for me, though. :) [more inside]
Another 2006 rehearsal recording... cleaned up but obviously very rough still. Don't Go To Strangers was written in 1954 by Arthur Kent and David Mann, with gorgeous lyrics by Redd "Frim Fram Sauce" Evans. Many people have covered it, but Etta James' version is the one that infatuated me to give it a go myself. Gorgeous piano work provided by the perpetually kickass Tamir Hendelman
Ok, so here's my spin on another old song. This Walter Donaldson/Gus Kahn composition was first featured in Florenz Zeigfield's 1928 Broadway musical Whoopee, starring Eddie Cantor & Ruth Etting, who took the song to #2 on the charts. In 1955, Doris Day starred in a biographical movie about Etting called "Love Me or Leave Me" & her updated rendition became a giant hit. Flash forward to 1967... Nina Simone turned this hokey old Ziegfeld tune into a completely reworked masterpiece of piano & voice (download link is at bottom). My own version (heard best live, I think) is definitely inspired by Nina's, but it could never compare to hers -- I just do my own thing & try to make it my own a bit. It's a fun song to do... audiences seem to love it. Incredible basswork once again provided by bass God Chris Conner.