Customer Reviews

16
4.4 out of 5 stars
5 star
8
4 star
6
3 star
2
2 star
0
1 star
0
Footprints
Format: Audio CDChange
Price:$8.35 + Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Format: Audio CD
Of late, every album she has released is radically different. Paris to Rio - French/Portuguese jazz, Ballads - classic jazz, In Blue - smooth blues, Wild about you - pop/jazz interpretations. Just when you thought all the bases were covered, Footprints arrives. In Footprints Karrin reinterprets jazz standards that have had lyrics added (by Chris Caswell) - no small feat! She gets 4 stars for bravery alone! It takes guts to mess with classics - she proves she's got what it takes. Though it contains a great mix of duets and solos, it's not for everyone. I'm sure some people will be upset with lyrics being added to pure jazz instrumentals, but no matter what, you have to give Karrin credit. She sings what she likes and it shows. Pure clean vocals. She doesn't have the biggest voice out there but she sure has the prettiest. By the way: You scat lovers will not be disappointed - Karrin delivers.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Format: Audio CD
IMHO, Karrin Allyson's "Ballads: Remembering John Coltrane" was the best vocal jazz c.d. of 2001, and one of the best of the millenium. But, IMHO, her follow-ups, "In Blue" and "Wild For You," didn't measure up to that one. The programs felt wrong, or something. So, where does "Footprints" stack up?

IMHO, to the caliber of "Ballads". I'm delighted to say: Karrin Allyson is back!

This album is about vocalese of post-bop tunes, mostly with original lyrics by Chris Caswell. We have: Dizzy's "Con Alma" (note: this was done with different lyrics, by Nancy Rafat, on Tierney Sutton's 2001 "Unsung Heroes"); Trane's "Equinox" (which is a slowed-down "Cousin Mary" by any other name); the famous "Jordu" of Duke Jordan's; Nat Adderley's "Teaneck" (an instrumental on the seminal "Cannonball Adderley and Nancy Wilson") and "Never Say Yes"; and the title track of Wayne Shorter's.

This setting absolutely works for Ms. Allyson. She sounds great, as always, and the piano work of accompanist Bruce Barth is top drawer.

But what makes this a high 5-star album is Nancy King, Oscar Brown and Jon Hendricks.

Nancy King's voice works superbly well with Ms. Allyson's. Together, they sound tremendous on "Yes," "A Tree and Me" and the title track; and her scatting on "Jordu" is sensational. She alone elevates this to a 5-star album.

"Tree" belongs to Oscar Brown, Jr., and is the highlight of this set. The reason why is that Ms. Allyson's voice works best when singing melancholy, plaintive ballads (which was what "Ballads" was mostly about); and this tune, with very poignant lyrics about the meaning of death, is the one. But the late Mr. Brown also contributes an hilarious "But I Was Cool", and Ms. Allyson brings a smile to your face with the alternate wailing and "being cool."

And what would a new vocalese album be without the James Joyce of it all, Jon Hendricks? Jon sits in on his sweet "Strollin'" of Horace Silver, and sounds in remarkably good voice. He even whistles a chorus, bringing back memories of "Whistlin' at the Pretty Girls" of early L, H & R days.

And then the album ends on the highest of high notes, with Jon, Nancy and Karrin tradin' fours on one of the old L, H & R staples, "Everybody's Boppin'." This sounds as good, if not better, as the immortal version with Dave Lambert and Annie Ross. I guess it isn't going to happen, but a new ensemble known as "Allyson Hendricks and King" would be just fine by me!

This may not end up being the best of 2006, when all is said and done; but it has to be an early contender. Very highly recommended. RC
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on June 21, 2006
Format: Audio CD
I discover Karryn Allison through this CD, and it is a happy discovery. I heard her rendition of Wayne Shorter's "Footprints" while shopping for books in a Barnes & Noble type bookstore in the Midwest, and immediately went over and bought the CD.

My personal favorites:

-Dizzy's "Con Alma" opens the CD beautifully. Her rendition adds a melancholy introspection to a tune that I have traditionally heard instrumentally with an entirely impersonal to serene feel. As a singer myself I have sung this tune with jazz choirs in churches in Harlem as an alternative to the usual hymn (it means "with [the] soul" in Spanish).

-"When some girl asks for your number, never say yes..." both the trio accompaniment of the two women on this cut of "All You Need to Say" and the lyrics are just about flawless. The choices of both of them in their improvisations compliment these qualities--and each other--beautifully. This tune makes me happy, the way a kid with a funny secret surrounded by cool acting adults feels.

-I am a nut for brilliant rhythmic improvisation, reconnecting jazz to its African roots. This cut of "Lazy Bird," with a deceptive syncopation which took me a minute to figure out, shows once again the talent of this trio.

-As I said I bought the entire CD for the cut of "Footprints." A song as perfectly written and performed as this one (Wayne's Shorter's African blues written for and performed by the second great Miles Davis Quintet of the sixties) is, as history has shown, often too intimidating to other instrumentalists let along singers to express via their own voice. Karryn makes this song her own, betraying (for lack of a better word) much of the African rhythmic pulse of the original without in actuality decaffeinating its essence. This one in particular has her and the feel established overshadowing the quality of the lyrics, yet the pianism and the muted trumpet, combined with the unexpected duo work of her and the pianist, makes it hauntingly original and beautiful enough to inspire poetry.

-And I cannot short shrift the presence of the Master himself: "Everybody's Boppin'" has some solo work from special guest Jon Hendricks that is joyfully exquisite.

Not every tune on the CD lives up to these gems...but then isn't that true of most CDs?

As I trained opera singer as well as composer/arranger studied in jazz, Karryn's vocal technique worries me at times. She's too young to show the effect of straining in her voice that usually accompanies chain-smoking singers almost twice her age. (Someone even makes a comment about this being one of her somewhat unfortunate trademarks on the liner notes of the CD.) Both her youth and this unnatural strain are evident in her pretty voice on some of the cuts. The right voice teacher could not only get rid of that without replacing it with an inauthentic sound but ensure that her very special artistry is around for another few decades.

All in all I have played this CD many times since buying it and enjoy it immensely. I recommend this--and her--highly, and will be picking up more of her work in the near future.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on May 20, 2006
Format: Audio CD
This new CD, "Footprints," is by far one of Ms. Allyson's finest outings to date...and I truly echo Rick's words here!

It is not an easy task to take some of the finest instrumental classics in jazz and add lyrics, but Chris Caswell gets a huge tip of the hat for a fine job. Add some killer contributions from Nancy King (who deserves wider recognition) and Jon Hendricks (Mr. Vocalese), and you've got a fine album in which the sum total (in my book) equals all of its individual parts.

Far and away, my two favorite tracks are "But I Was Cool," with a killer flute solo by Frank Wess, and the rapid-fire "Everybody's Boppin'", where all the voices are joined together (reminiscent of Lambert, Hendricks and Ross). The memory of the late, great Oscar Brown, Jr. is preserved on this disc with two songs - it broke my heart to know that he passed on just months before having a chance to add his talent to the proceedings.

Thanks Karrin - can't wait to see what you come up with next time!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on November 24, 2006
Format: Audio CD
First of all, even the KA albums I care for least are still worth listening to. She never fails to stretch the song list and try something new,which is beyond commendable in my book.

I've seen Karrin numerous times live, and she is truly amazing, especially as a singer (although she's truly a musician). Her interplay with other musicians, the audience, and the songs is remarkable. She is comfortable and playful on stage, and willing to mess around with arrangements/solos/lyrics etc. in a loose and fun way. I most recently saw her at the Green Mill in Chicago (great great place) and her interplay with Todd Strait (her longtime drummer, and one of the best IMHO) and Larry Kohut (local bassist who seems to be playing melodies all the time, even when not soloing) was spectacular.

That said, her recent albums (this one, Wild for You, In Blue) have failed to capture that spirit, and sound a bit flat to me. The songs on Footprints really came alive in performance, especially Turnaround, which really rocked, and listening to the album again, I wondered why it didn't have that life to it. Perhaps too much New York studio perfectionism was the culprit. My favorite album of hers is still Paris to Reo; expansive song list, vibrant performances, and always fun to listen to.

Karrin should do a live album that really shows people what she's all about as a performer. I think then many people who've not seen her in person would "get it", and really enjoy her musicianship. Perhaps if she recorded an album "live in the studio" that would help, since she and the musicians could play around as they do on stage.

If you get the chance to see Karrin perform, especially in a small club, please go; you won't be dissapointed!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 7, 2007
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
Turned on my car radio a couple of weeks ago to WBGO NPR Jazz out of Newark,NJ and heard this great vocal rendition of Dizzy's Con Alma and was totally mesmerized. The singers voice and style were just perfect for the song, almost as though the song written more than 50 years ago was waiting for these beautiful lyrics and this wonderfull singers heart-felt rendition. I just flipped. Thanks to Amazon search and sample takes, I came up with Karrin Allyson and this terrific CD "Footprints".

Karrin handles every tune creativly and with class and style, and what a style. I thought I was hip to all the good jazz singers on the scene, but wow, did I miss her. Karrin swings like crazy on the up tunes and sings with tremendous feeling on the ballads.The choice of songs on this CD are a terrific blend of some of the best jazz of the 50"s and 60's that every real jazz fan knows, since they are trully jazz classics.This CD gives them a whole set of new imaginative lyrics and fresh new arrangements. This group plays as one, and you sense they have played together for a long period. The addition of Jon Hendricks and Nancy King really make this CD even more outstandinng.Chris Caswell's Lyrics are brilliant and a perfect fit, all these many years later.

Jordu, Strollin, But I was Cool, Never Say Yes---all swing.Footprints and Con Alma are just beautifull ballads. What can I say but that this is one of the best vocal albums I have ever listened to.

I can't believe this is Karrin Allysons 10th CD and I never new of her. She is one of those few singers that makes the song she sings her song, and you will always associate these tunes with her after hearing this CD

Now I guess I just have to order some of these CD's she's released through the years to catch up with her, and enjoy even more of this fantastic singers work.

I see Karrin's going to be in my town, New York, at Birdland in May '07 and at the Lichfield Jazz concert in Connecticut in August '07. You better believe I won't miss those performances. I bet she must be just great in a jazz club. I really have to make up for lost time.

Not to buy this CD would be one big mistake.I listen to it over and over. Concord, you just have to have Allyson do another one with the same theme. There are so many other Jazz Classics crying out for her to interprete. Let's do a whole bunch of these CDs and you can add even more of your talented guest to join in, as you did with "Footprints"

What a delight.....Long live this great music.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 21, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Karrin Allyson from my native Kansas City, Mo. just gets better as time goes on. Her latest CD, "Footprints," is a knockout and deserves 6 stars out of 5. I am not a jazz-a-holic or an expert on technical music analysis, but as a jazz fan I am just blown away by Karrin's new one -- especially "Strollin" and "A Tree and Me." And the guest artists are superb. Keep it up, Karrin. Everyone should have the thrill of listening to "Footprints," a great addition to your already outstanding CD offerings.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 2007
Format: Audio CD
I'm a huge fan of Karrin and her music, but this has left me disappointed. If you are just discovering her, I'd suggest you spend your money on some of her earlier recordings, which are superb. Try "From Paris to Rio", "Azure-Té", "I Didn't Know About You", "Ballads - Remembering John Coltrain" or "Daydream".
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon February 11, 2009
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
"Footprints" finds the exceptionally talented Karrin Allyson trying to have her cake and eat it too because she is performing old standards that have been rearranged, plus she is performing with Nancy King, a formidable jazz artist in her own right.

The result is a sparkling mixture of old, new, and just plain good. "I Found The Turnaround (The Turnaround)," "But I Was Cool," "Everybody's Boppin'," and "All You Need To Say" are just a few of the songs found here, and Ms. Allyson shines and shimmers throughout. This is a record that shouldn't have a hard time finding a home with jazz lovers.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
Karrin;
Is Great, different in the Genre's she sings, Wonderful, she can scat and you never know what to expect to come from this Sexy lady.
If you don't have her music, try at least one.
Learn to live and enjoy her versions of Jazz.
I must admit I am biased,
I own almost all of her CD's, so take that in kind.
I even listen to these fine recordings very often........
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
     
 
Customers who viewed this also viewed
'Round Midnight
'Round Midnight by Karrin Allyson (Audio CD - 2011)

Ballads: Remembering John Coltrane
Ballads: Remembering John Coltrane by Karrin Allyson (Audio CD - 2001)

By Request: The Best of Karrin Allyson
By Request: The Best of Karrin Allyson by Karrin Allyson (Audio CD - 2009)
 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.

Your Recently Viewed Items and Featured Recommendations 
 

After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in.