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Customer Review

64 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Next "Must Own Jazz Classic" -- no Hype., October 4, 2002
By 
This review is from: Live In Paris (Audio CD)
I know diana Krall gets her share of record company hype, but in the case of the DVD and CD here, it's actually deserved -- and therefore it really isn't "hype".
"The Look of Love" from 2001, was a bad stumble, and I guess Diana and her cohorts realized it. So they set out to redeem and recapture their stature and reputations. Just for the record, they succeeded -- the recovery is magnificent. I'm not sure if this is the same band with which she toured Asia in 2001 (a stellar performance on May 7, 2001 in Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR --if anyone else reading this caught it, then you know). But the jazz musicianship here is outstanding.
The strings and studio-generated mush is gone, and so are the producer efforts to make Diana Krall sound like "[insert top pop-chick's name] for adults". There are several elements that make this a worthwhile purchase even if you own several Krall studio CD's. In the case of the DVD, there's the added bonus of the visuals, an expanded song selection, and lots of off stage and 'behind the scenes' footage. But as if to make sure that fans buy both, the CD features songs not on the DVD. THe mix is more jazz and less pop than the studio recordings. As a consequence, Diana Krall's piano playing is featured more prominently. Songs that really fell flat on "Look of Love" are also brought to life by the presence of a drummer and vibraharpist (who is curiously not credited--probably due to some matter involving lawyers).
This performance is a return to classic form for jazz fans. The arrangements are excellent, the crowd is quiet during the songs -- but clearly thrilled by the performance. But what really makes this memorable is the song selection. That is strong enought here that I think this CD will still be listened to (and selling) decades from now.
A few surprises are "Just The Way You Are", from Billy Joel's mid-1970's album "The Stranger", and "A Case Of You", an obscure Joni Mitchell song from "Blue". The jazz versions actually outdoo the originals in some respects, and suggest that great songs will be Diana Krall's main focus in future releases. That impression is reinforced by her rendition of "Fly Me To The Moon", originally a hit for Frank Sinatra.
While she missed being on the soundtrack to the movie "Space Cowboys", Krall has had other collaborations with Clint Eastwood. Eastwood (along with Willie Nelson and a few other old warhorses) seems to be looking for cool new talent and apparently Diana Krall fits that mold. So, I think we can all expect some really exceptional releases and movie soundtrack work from Diana and her fellow musicians in the next few years.
By refusing to go the pop route and doing what some brain dead VP at a record company wanted, Diana Krall has avoided the fate of Cheryl Crow and others who desparately chase celebrity and try to be part of the IN CROWD. With this release she has crossed a threshold to become one of the IN CROWD on her own terms.
This CD has the earmarks of a defining piece of work. Probably the first classic Jazz release of the 21st century.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 5, 2011 10:02:04 PM PDT
Adam Donovan says:
Great, great review. I ordered the CD on the strength of "Case of You" heard months ago while driving. At first I thought, "Oh, Joni.....". But then realized it was Diana Krall. She sang that song with so much feeling I had to pull over; I couldn't see the road for the tears. For me, she owns (a piece of) that song of Joni's. Can't wait to hear the CD.

Posted on Feb 1, 2012 12:52:28 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 1, 2012 12:55:10 PM PST
Ten years on, still the best review written for this classic album -- deservedly 'top-of-the-"SPOTLIGHT," where it belongs. Like "Adam Donovan" (above) I remember having that same experience -- hearing Diana's version of Joni Mitchell's CASE OF YOU. On those rare occasions when she does a 'cover' of a Grammy-nominated (or winning) song by someone else (think Billy Joel's JUST THE WAY YOU ARE -- the closing track here, and the only one recorded in a New York studio) whenever she covers someone else's work its always the retire-the-trophy version. Especially performed live, as she did a couple years ago with our world-class Winnipeg Symphony orchestra. (She flew in Alan Broadbent, one of today's very best arrangers, to conduct at her show here!)

A propos shared musical tastes, this very day I posted an appreciation for Diana's take on JUST THE WAY YOU ARE, over at the 'world's biggest website for musicians' -- HARMONY CENTRAL -- in the "songwriting" folder of their "forums." My thread ("Call it a blog, now, Mark!") is titled, "A Great Melody First, THEN the lyrics . . . "

Budding young American song writers haven't contributed much, but tune in daily to see which "great old song/great singer" this soon-to-retire musical dinosaur will celebrate next; it turned 279,000 (correct) "views" overnight. Something tells me you might enjoy, if you can find your way there. (Adam Donovan too!)

Keep writing the fine reviews, "B. Lynch -- the onewhoknows."

Mark B of the frozen North

p.s. Hope this link helps (it's bottom of page 33, post 659, "I Love You JUST THE WAY YOU ARE."

http://acapella.harmony-central.com/showthread.php?2502197-A-great-melody-first-then-lyrics-(only)-THEN-vocals/page33
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