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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The complete jazz singer
Whether it is scatting, vocalese (composing new words to previous instrumental solos) or just singing the tune fairly straight, Kurt Elling is the master jazz singer of this and possibly any age. For jazz fusion types the easiest ways in are his vocal interpretations of Pat Metheny and Weather Report tunes, but there is a lot more on this album to keep you interested for...
Published on 20 Oct. 2007 by P. Bacon

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2.0 out of 5 stars Strictly for the jazz purist
This is an uber-cool jazz cd. It is almost poetry being sung to jazz renditions. Its not my kind of music but those that like jazz that is slightly discordant to the untrained ear, then this is exactly right for you. Im a pleb who enjoys to-tapping music and this album isn't to my taste. Kurt Elling has a superb voice though and some of the solos from the...
Published 16 months ago by deelicious


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The complete jazz singer, 20 Oct. 2007
By 
P. Bacon (Staffordshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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Whether it is scatting, vocalese (composing new words to previous instrumental solos) or just singing the tune fairly straight, Kurt Elling is the master jazz singer of this and possibly any age. For jazz fusion types the easiest ways in are his vocal interpretations of Pat Metheny and Weather Report tunes, but there is a lot more on this album to keep you interested for years to come, from having fun with wordplay to a seriously spiritual vocal interpretation of John Coltrane's Resolution. "How dare he?" the purists might ask. Well, daring is his middle name. The man has immense talent, exceptionally high standards and great courage. His band is spectacular too.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sublime and Peerless, 13 Aug. 2004
This review is from: Man in the Air (Audio CD)
Another recording in the tradition popularised by jazz artists such as Lamberts, Hendricks and Ross('Sing A Song For Basie') and Anita O'Day ('Sings The Winners') where the instrumental solos in jazz compositions are used as the basis for vocals and lyrics. However, in this album, Elling has raised the bar by some height. This is not an exercise in vocal virtuosity; the compositions are treated with the utmost respect.
Lyrics are added here to compositions by artists as diverse as John Coltrane 'Resolution', Herbie Hancock 'A Secret I', Joe Zawinul 'Time To Say Goodbye' and Courtney Pine 'Higher Vibe'. The title track is composed by Laurence Hobgood, the pianist on this recording, and Elling. It's brilliantly organic with seamless changes of tempo. Indeed, Elling's mastery of this form is unsurpassed, managing to avoid sounding flashy and creating something timeless. This is one of those albums that have to be listened to as a whole to get the full effect of its power. It doesn't come across as a set of disparate tracks flung together. It's well sequenced, allowing Elling to incorporate lush ballads, scatting, and masterly flights of vocal ingenuity on uptempo compositions. And 'Time To Say Goodbye' is astonishing, worth 5 stars on it's own. Elling takes Joe Zawinul's composition and crafts one of the most beautiful, mesmerising moving pieces of music in existence. If that sounds hyperbolic, well once you've heard it you'll agree with me.
As well as Elling, the contributions to this recording of Hobgood, Stefon Harris (vibes), Frank Parker Jnr (drums) and Rob Amster (bass) have to be noted.
It's your duty to buy and cherish this.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Will not disappoint, 3 Feb. 2009
This review is from: Man in the Air (Audio CD)
I came across Kurt Elling when he was playing in my town. I read a few reviews saying he is the greatest living jazz vocalist...seem like the heady stuff that gets pumped out to hype a gig but then leads to general disappointment with the actual performance....well not in this case. I may not be qualified to say he is greatest living jazz singer but he did get a long standing ovation...with this peformance in mind I thought let's try the albums. In this album..dare I say it..he takes "Resolution" to new wonderful places and "Higher Vibe" although the lyrics are simplicity themselves they mesmerise with the clarity of his vocal range...he may or may not be the greatest living jazz vocalist but one thing is for sure this album should not disappoint...enjoy
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inventive & rich, 3 May 2010
By 
Mr. David E. Cuthbert "DavidElvin" (Winscombe, England) - See all my reviews
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This album is definitely not background music. His work is full of musical and emotional richness. Kurt Elling is a fully rounded human being!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Strictly for the jazz purist, 20 Dec. 2013
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This review is from: Man in the Air (Audio CD)
This is an uber-cool jazz cd. It is almost poetry being sung to jazz renditions. Its not my kind of music but those that like jazz that is slightly discordant to the untrained ear, then this is exactly right for you. Im a pleb who enjoys to-tapping music and this album isn't to my taste. Kurt Elling has a superb voice though and some of the solos from the instrumentalists are terrific.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Man in the air, 17 Jan. 2012
excellent album, very varied in his presentation, many vocal styles on one album - a real joy to listen to.
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Man in the Air
Man in the Air by Kurt Elling (Audio CD - 2003)
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