Over the past few years it has become fashionable for rock singers, pop singers and even country singers to dip into the Great American Songbook with varying degrees of success. Here, Harry Connick Jr shows himself to be the real deal adding some newer songs to the concept and four classic songs penned by Brits.
One great advantage that this CD enjoys is in the strength of the fifteen selections, there is not an ounce of filler on the entire album. There are the perfectly delivered standards: "All The Way", "Some Enchanted Evening", "Mona Lisa", and "Besame Mucho". Then, tipping his hat to more rock oriented songs we find subtly reworked versions of Taupin & John's "Your Song", Don McLean's "And I Love You So" and Lennon & McCartney's "And I Love Her" plus an alternate version of this number where he duets with Carla Bruni,
The simple beauty of the classics "The Way You Look Tonight", "Can't Help Falling In Love With You" and Ewan McColl's "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" are handled with restraint and sophistication.
As singer, piano player, arranger, conductor and producer Connick has wrought one of the albums of the year. Everything about the orchestra and the arrangements smacks of class and, as Harry's voice caresses the lyrics and glides over the melodies, you feel a sense that when he sings the world can't be all bad.