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on 16 February 2001
The Tender Trap was the second Stacey Kent album, released by Candid Records in 1998 following on from the success of Close Your Eyes. There is a glowing introduction from award-winning song writer, Jay Livingston. He was grabbed by her voice when he heard it across a noisy London Restaurant. In my case it was her appearance in the film, Richard III. Since then her popularity has grown in leaps and bounds on both sides of the Atlantic and it's easy to see why from this recording. As more and more people become fans, she is likened to many different singers, but really she is an original. She has a way of taking a song, any song, and putting it across in such a way as to make it seem completely fresh and original, no matter who may have recorded it in the past. In this album, I particularly like Fools Rush In, where Stacey's wonderful voice and phrasing are perfectly complemented by the sympathetic artistry of her (very English) husband Jim Tomlinson on tenor sax. I have always liked Carley Simon's version of In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning, but the more I hear Stacey's version, the better I like it. If your taste is something with more rhythm, then you will love Comes Love, but each and every track brings its own particular delights. I saw Stacey perform live for the first time recently and it was great to see her warm and bubbly personality, but then, as on this recording, the backing of Jim Tomlinson, David Newton on piano and Colin Oxley on guitar were outstanding. These are musician at work, but it is also their pleasure - and ours.
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Stacey is now getting long-overdue recognition in the land of her birth thanks to her 2004 album, The boy next door, but she has been a major name in British jazz circles for a few years now. This is one of the albums that show why. I am amazed to read reviews criticizing Stacey's voice but we are all entitled to our opinions. I think she has a wonderful voice. Any minor technical limitations are more than compensated for in other ways. She likes to put her own distinctive interpretations on each song, so she can adapt the song to suit her voice. Classic songs from the Great American Songbook are Stacey's speciality. This is a very competitive market but Stacey has proved well capable of taking on the competition.
On this album, you can hear Stacey's versions of such classics as the title track (Frank Sinatra), I didn't know about you (Duke Ellington), Comes love (Artie Shaw with Helen Forrest singing), In the still of the night (Tommy Dorsey), Fools rush in (Glenn Miller), East of the sun (Tom Coakley), Zing went the strings of my heart (Judy Garland), They say it's wonderful (Frank Sinatra), Don't be that way (Benny Goodman), They all laughed (Fred Astaire), In the wee small hours of the morning (Frank Sinatra) and It's a wonderful world (Charlie Barnet). If one or two of the original hit-makers seem unfamiliar, a look at the composer credits will reassure you. Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, Jimmy Van Heusen, Sammy Cahn, George and Ira Gershwin - they're all there.
Stacey is, as ever, backed by some of the finest jazz musicians in Britain (and she's married to one of them). Her music may have less crossover appeal than Diana Krall and Norah Jones but it's possible to enjoy the music of all three in their different ways.
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on 7 October 2005
The title track gets this CD off to a fabulously cheerful start and really makes you smile and want to dance. Sadly for my neighbours it makes me want to sing along (sorry !) but I can listen to this CD over and over again and each song still sounds fresh and new and exciting.
Track 6 is my all time favourite track of Stacey's - East of the Sun. I request this whenever I get the chance to hear Stacey perform live and it never fails to give me goosebumps and puts a smile on my face.
If you have never heard Stacey Kent sing before, then this is a good first album to get.
I LOVE this album !
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on 20 May 2013
Not the best example. I have bought Stacey Kent albums before. Sadly this one gets a little carried away with it's self. Bland, bland, bland... sorry
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on 30 May 2000
If you love the sweet, strong female sultry jazz voice, then Stacey Kent has it! What more I can say!
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on 16 April 2008
This review is much belated, as I first became aware of Stacey Kent on the Michael Parkinson show, singing the title track of this CD, on it's release, in front of a big band.

It is no secret that Parky loves Big Bands, and this one was probably conducted by Laurie Holloway.

It was a surprise when I immediately bought the CD and discovered no Big Band, just the small group of (superlative) musicians that accompany her on all her recordings (since changed for Breakfast on the morning tram).

While I thoroughly enjoy all of Stacey Kent's CDs, I can't help but hanker for one CD, or even a couple of tracks, to be with a Big Band. I can't imagine why Mr Parkinson has not been able to persuade her to do it, even if it is just for him.

I'm writing this in the review section, as there seems to be no earthly way of conveying feedback to Ms Kent directly.

To all of those introduced to her when she sang 'Tender Trap' on Parkinson and enjoyed the band, here's an opportunity to throw your tuppence worth in too.
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on 25 March 2014
Love to hear Stacey Kent's great voice and this selection of melodies does her vocal talents justice. If you like your laid back jazz and have never tried Stacey's brand before, this is a great starting point.
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on 13 February 2015
heard sstaci over the system in local wine bar and woe what a voice, like a cryatal, so i ought this just to see if it continued. weel worth it.
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