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Talk To The Hand

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The best musicians transcend styles and techniques. They deliver their hearts and souls, connecting on a primal level, one on one with each and every listener. Karen Carroll is just such an artist and one of the most universal artists to come on the scene since Nina Simone. Within one line she can lay down the grit of Howlin' Wolf stroked by the sass of Sarah Vaughan.

Review

The liner notes to this CD, which focus rather unnecessarily on Karen Carroll's personal vulnerability and emotional complexity, boast that the Chicago-based vocalist is "one of the most universal artists to come on the scene since Nina Simone." Unfortunately, despite Carroll's admirable willingness to tackle a variety of styles and genres, most of the music does not substantiate this claim ... there's a forced quality to Carroll's delivery. Too often her phrasing is pedestrian, and on some of her ascents she sounds as if she is singing more from her throat than from her heart. The title tune's lyrics are witty and the horn arrangement is chunky and soulful. Carroll's wind, however, sounds in danger of giving out before the verses do. She seems more comfortable with ballads, especially when she can remain securely within the lower registers. -- Living Blues
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 9, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Delmark
  • ASIN: B000004BM6
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #809,439 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By R. Kesler on December 1, 2012
Format: Audio CD
All of the best things in life are vaguely familiar, even when it's brand new, that's just how it is ... your toes begin tapping, your mind begins a search for recognition, and by the time you realize it's all fresh, you've been lost in the first half of the album, bopping your head, snapping your fingers, and spinning on the kitchen floor like you've actually taken some dance lessons.

This is Karen's second release, and her first with much of her own material, material that is both soulful, filled with gospel undertones, full of heavy laden blues fruit, and a timeless quality that will have you shifting into low gear. Jeanne Carroll, guitarist, and one of the founding members of the women's jazz and blues club was her mother ... and just to prove that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, her godfather was the legendary jazz guitarist George Freeman. I so wish that she hadn't titled this album Talk To The Hand, it just makes the release sound dated and trite, and to that end, I'm not gonna try and convince you that every track is killer, because they aren't, leaving those that are, to peel the paint off your walls; just dig her take on "Sweet Home Chicago," or "I Cant Fight The Blues," songs that are strung together by her sensational deep lush and resonating vocals, dynamic piano, a hypnotic Hammond B, and an understated guitar that zips it up tight.

Another off the wall release from Delmark, proving that if they don't have it, you don't need it.

Review by Jenell Kesler
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Format: Audio CD
The best musicians transcend styles and techniques. They deliver their hearts and souls, connecting on a primal level, one on one with each and every listener. Karen Carroll is just such an artist and one of the most universal artists to come on the scene since Nina Simone. Within one line, indeed alomst one word of a song, she can lay down the grit of Howlin' Wolf stroked by the sass of Sarah Vaughan. Talk to the Hand features six Karen Carroll originals and a blues style, heavily influenced by gospel, all her own. Of her first album, Had My Fun , critics had this to say: "Karen Carroll appears poised to make her bid for blues queen of Chicago--her thundering performance should leave the competition quaking." Stephen Sharp, Living Blues. "Karen has an instrumental quality to her vocals--a quality usually reserved to describe the world-class artistry of Billie Holiday and Sarah Vaughan." Larry Hoffman, King Biscuit Times.
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