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The Cole Porter Mix

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Audio CD, September 16, 2008
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$7.36 $4.50

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Easy To Love 3:36$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  2. I Wait For Late Afternoon And You 5:14$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  3. I Get A Kick Out Of You 4:28$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  4. You're The Top 3:39$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Just One Of Those Things 3:47$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Snow 4:45$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  7. C'est Magnifique 3:37$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Get Out Of Town 4:22$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  9. I Concentrate On You 5:02$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen10. In The Still Of The Night 5:24$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen11. What Is This Thing Called Love? 3:59$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen12. Miss Otis Regrets 4:11$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen13. The New Year's Eve Song 4:01$1.29  Buy MP3 

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From her early days leading a jazz trio in small Chicago nightclubs, Patricia Barber has drawn extravagant accolades. The praise came at first from local writers, impressed by her unique arrangements and coolly composed piano improvisations. As she added vocals to her repertoire, the praise poured in from national reviewers intoxicated by her recordings. And when (after years of international ... Read more in Amazon's Patricia Barber Store

Visit Amazon's Patricia Barber Store
for 16 albums, 12 photos, videos, discussions, and more.

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 16, 2008)
  • Original Release Date: 2008
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Blue Note Records
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #82,198 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Sublimely intimate but hugely expressive investigation of the brilliant songs of Cole Porter by the wonderfully artful singer/pianist and composer Patrica Barber. She breathes fresh life into his music as well as contributing three typically intelligent originals. Like her label mate Wilson, Barber is a genuine one off and Cole Porter Mix is un-missable. "One of the most accomplished female jazz singer-pianists on the planet. Chicago-based Barber has a voice that caresses and challenges and cajoles and taunts and teases every nuance of meaning from each ambiguous syllable". The Guardian "Even a casual listener would soon be won over by her seductive voice, her forceful soloing and, not least, her immaculate quartet arrangements". The Times "The most fearless, most intellectually stimulating and, by extension, most interesting singer-songwriterpianist on the American jazz scene." JazzTimes For more than two decades, Barber, based in Chicago, has led her own band and released a series of highly acclaimed, strikingly singular albums, that have seen her recognised as one of the greatest songs tylists on the planet. For her latest album, singer/pianist Barber applies her austere but beautiful heartfelt expressiveness to breath new life into the music of one of the Great American Songbook composers. The Cole Porter Mix not only spotlights her artful interpretations of Porter's songs but also features three Porter-inspired originals. "Cole Porter has always been my songwriting idol," says Barber. "I love his music and I've been singing his songs for so many years." Barber's band includes guitarist Neal Alger, who has been performing with her the past six years, and bassist Michael Arnopol, who has worked with her since 1980. "We're like brother and sister," she says. "We learned jazz together and played all those gigs in Chicago together when I was coming up." Drum duties are shared by Eric Montzka and Nate Smith, while tenor saxophonist Chris Potter guests on five tracks. Barber plays piano throughout as well as contributes melodica colours to some tunes, including her gem, "The New Year's Eve Song," that closes the album. Another original on The Cole Porter Mix is the

Leave it to the intrepid Patricia Barber to take on so well-worn a songbook as Cole Porter’s with such smoldering originality. Of course, for 15 years now, Barber has been something of an Ella Fitzgerald meets the madwoman-in-the-attic, a sheen of peerless respectability masking an uncompromising taste for the respectfully subversive. With 2006’s seminal Mythologies, Barber took the Guggenheim and ran with it, planting one foot in Ovid and the other in Harlem. Here, her unflappable taste for danger takes her deep into the Porter oeuvre. But in Barber’s hands, every old familiar lyric takes on new and usually devious entendre. Delivered in her heavily honeyed timbre, shopworn standards like "I Get a Kick Out of You" (with its new chord structure) and "You’re the Top" (with its new lyrics) suggest the fecund extra layers that their titles--generously interpreted--imply. As usual, Barber’s top-notch band delivers a flawless performance. If the arrangements lean a bit heavily on the sax, it’s because one doesn’t record with Chris Potter and not give the guy some breathing room. "I asked Chris if he ever plays schmaltzy," Barber explains. "He said no, but he could if I wanted him to." And so he does, not least on "The New Year’s Eve Song," the album’s closer and one of three Barber originals included here. Despite the self-admitted "hubris" involved in including her own material amidst this most canonical set list, the gamble pays off (check out the incomparable "Snow"). Since Patricia Barber has never been interested in mere nostalgia anyway, the result is an album that--although it looks at first glance like a relaxing sinecure--packs all the daring, velvet punch that Barber fans have to come to expect. And (more importantly) to trust. --Jason Kirk

Customer Reviews

To my friend...thank you muchly for a great recommendation.
Patricia Barber's boxing matching match with sentimentality continues in this nearly perfect interpretation of Cole Porter classics.
Her arrangements are creative and capture the soul of the music.
J. McDonald

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Rick Cornell VINE VOICE on November 10, 2008
Format: Audio CD
I thought 2006's "Mythologies" was one of the most creative "jazz" recordings ever, and one of the best c.d.'s of that year. When I heard that Ms. Barber was going from that Guggenheim-funded project to a c.d. of Cole Porter covers, I thought, "Huh?"

But in a weird sort of way, it makes sense. Say what you will about Patricia Barber: this is an artist who pushes the envelope. And discovering how to make new and fresh an idea that has been done a thousand times before is, in its own way, a creative challenge.

And Patricia Barber succeeds. Here's why:

In previous recordings, I've noted that Patricia Barber is like a singing Mrs. Robinson - one who sings with a detached cool that masks a profound amount of emotion. Here, she lets the emotion out.

Check out the broad romance of "Late Afternoon and You." Consider the breathless wonder of "C'est Magnifique." Or listen to the intense forboding of "Get Out of Town." Or the bitter, clenched-teeth delivery of "Miss Otis Regrets." Throughout, Ms. Barber consistently finds the right tone for each of these songs, and performs them artistically.

An admiring word, as well, regarding her main and long-time instrumentalist, guitarist Michael Arnopol. As he demonstrated on "White World" on both the "Mythologies" and the "Fortnight in France" recordings, this man can be the fastest guitarist since John McLaughlin. But here, throughout he sublimates the ego and plays to the musical settings which Ms. Barber has created. It's not that he can't play dazzlingly: check out what he does on "What Is This Thing Called Love?" It's that first and foremost, he plays musically.

Is Patricia Barber one of the finest singers around? I have others I prefer. Is she one of the finest pianists around?
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By K. Knox on September 20, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Patricia Barber's recordings are of such superb quality that one doesn't expect her to get better, yet she does. A songwriter of the highest caliber, superb pianist and amazing singer who is just scary, genius-level smart.

Many delights here: great versions of Cole Porter, of course. Originals that more than hold their own (the gorgeous eroticism of "Snow" is itself worth the cost of the CD). Chris Potter's unbelievable solos. Perhaps most inspiring, her wonderful band that has been with her for years keeps getting better; guitarist Neal Alger in particular seems to have taken a giant leap forward from his already very high level of play.

Great stuff!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By sea-psych on September 30, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Patricia Barber's boxing matching match with sentimentality continues
in this nearly perfect interpretation of Cole Porter classics. She counter-
punches his exuberance with dry wit and brings fun to his cycnicism.
Never has "You're the Top" been so carefree. "Get Outta Town" echoes
Barber's own "Ya Gotta Go Home", the piano mocking the lyrics and the
subject as well.
No one else seems capable of this kind of intelligent, funny, honest
work. Surely no one does it better.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca*rhapsodyinblue* VINE VOICE on September 4, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Prior to this CD, "Cole Porter Mix," I did not own any of Patricia Barber's recordings. So when a friend of mine whose recommendations I trust, suggested that I buy it and listen to it, I did not hesitate and purchased the CD early this year.

Patricia Barber's voice has the same quality that I look for in a jazz singer and that is why I enjoy listening to her interpretations of some of Cole Porter's classics. On all tracks, she does not only sing but plays the piano as well. Her team of support musicians did a great job in their respective instruments: Chris Potter on tenor sax (tracks 3, 5, 7, 10, 13), Neal Alger on acoustic/electric guitar (all tracks), Michael Arnopol on bass (tracks 1-11, 13), Eric Montzka on drums/percussion (tracks 2-10, 13) and Nate Smith on drums/percussion (tracks 1, 11, 12).

It is nice to know that Patricia Barber is not only a singer/musician, she is also a songwriter. She wrote the words and composed the music of three of the tracks here: "I Wait For Late Afternoon and You," "Snow" and "The New Year's Eve Song."

Some of the beautiful highlights of the album include smooth-flowing, pretty cool deliveries of "Easy To Love," "I Concentrate On You" and "C'est Magnifique," the particular track that evokes the romantic sound and spirit of Paris. It also showcases Ms. Barber's ability to play a unique musical instrument called melodica, and Neal Alger's enthralling guitar work. "In The Still of The Night" is another favorite where Ms. Barber's voice is more pronounced, and her pianistic flair is more arresting. It has excellent instrumentation and her delivery is engagingly effervescent ending with Chris Potter's wailing saxophone. He sounded like an alumni from "Charlie Parker School of Music.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dreiske Arnold on January 19, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought this cd for my husband for Christmas. It's great wrapping a gift that you just know is going to be what they want! We've seen her in concert, so no, this isn't as good as that, but Patricia Barber is just one of the most sublime muscians out there. Even my 3-year old loves the CD. We had friends over for a casual dinner and it was just the perfect music playing.
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