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4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Worrisome Heart
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£5.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 24 September 2017
Great album
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on 27 September 2017
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on 2 November 2013
Melody Gardot's music is as haunting as her own story. Nearly killed in a hit-and-run accident at 19, she suffered aphasia, memory loss, hypersensitivity to light and sound and nerve damage. Her doctor encouraged her to try music therapy, and Melody penned her first songs, resulting in 2005's EP Some Lessons: The Bedroom Sessions, so named because they were recorded with Melody sitting in a wheelchair at the hospital. She played piano prior to her accident, but because of the nerve damage from her fractured pelvis, she couldn't sit at a piano, so she picked up a guitar.

The same DJ that promoted a young Norah Jones also picked up Melody Gardot, and she was signed to Verve, resulting in her first album Worrisome Heart (which features one song off the EP, Some Lessons, the first song that Melody wrote after her accident). The album opens with the smoky, noir-drenched Worrisome Heart, with its blusey piano intro and snare brushes. The brass section adds punch, while the Harmon-muted trumpet adds a striking counterpart.

All That I Need Is Love opens with guitar and clarinet, with whimsical lyrics and playful delivery that segues into some upbeat scat singing. Sweet Memories will draw the most comparisons to Norah Jones (Come Away with Me), with its soft blend of folksy acoustic guitar and Dobro guitar. Some Lessons tells Melody's difficult story; she said that she's refrained from performing it live because of the painful connotations. Quiet Fire has a dark, smoky vibe from the organ. One Day opens with the Harmon muted trumpet and the simple simplicity of guitar. Love Me Like a River Does may be the haunting showpiece that calls to mind Billie Holiday; the raw, wistful yearning with its undercurrent of piano. The playful, pouty bounce of Goodnight is addictive, with its scat and layered vocals. The album is short, though; it clocks in at less than 40 minutes, leaving you craving more (Melody's second album is My One and Only Thrill).

If Film Noir could be condensed into a single package, it would be Worrisome Heart. This music would be amazing on its own, but is even more powerful for Melody's experiences recovering from a near-fatal accident and turning it into powerful jazz-infused tunes that showcase her smoky, mature voice. This is a must for fans of Norah Jones and Madeleine Peyroux, and classic jazz chanteuses like Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald.
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VINE VOICEon 30 March 2008
Format: Audio CD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I have only a smattering of jazz in my collection so I'm by no-means a fan of the genre. With this in mind I found Melody's album very accessible; I won't compare her directly to Norah Jones but Norah does provide a useful yardstick here. If you like what Norah does then you will find this a little up-tempo and a bit more jazzy; if you don't like what Norah does because you find it sombre then the wider dynamic range and depth might well appeal.

I really liked the quality of the production of the album too - I have mid range gear but I would image that a nice Linn or Naim system would make this sound really special. The deep luxurious bass notes, cool sax and oboe really sound very nice.

There is only one track I'm not mad about, which isn't bad for an album these days though at only 33 minutes it's not the longest album in the world.

Overall the album is quite an unexpected pleasure; my wife said exactly the same thing!
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In a bit of an overcrowded market it's unusual to hear a young jazz chanteuse that manages to rise above the crowd. Melody Gardot is such a one.

This is a classy and intelligent album. Gardot's nicely modulated breathy delivery is complimented by an elegant sounding backing band. The best comparison I can draw is with Billie Holliday - Gardot's voice doesn't have the same power, but it does have the same intensity and technical skill, and the style of the backing band is similar. I especially enjoyed the rather good trumpet lines. Actually, thinking about it, I was also rather reminded of Chris Rea's recent `Blue Jukebox' album.

This is a set of well crafted catchy tunes, all composed by Gardot. The lyrics are intelligent and literate, mainly tales of regret and loss. Gardot's clear diction allows every syllable to be clearly heard. The words are meaningful, but never too schmaltzy. The mood is definitely blue, evoking images of dark smokey late night bars, where people go to be on their own, listening to the singer and crying gently into their drinks.

If I have any criticism of the album it would be the unvarying tempo, all the tracks have a slow, shuffling pace which suits the mood, but I felt that one or two tracks with a faster beat would have just lifted the album to the highest height.

Recommended to all fans of classy, elegant jazz/blues. I really look forward to hearing Gardot's next album.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 25 March 2008
Format: Audio CD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a faintly retro-flavoured compilation of songs all written by Melody Gardot and I must say straight away, as a lover of female jazz/R&B singers such as Norah Jones, Amy Winehouse, Duffy and Katie Melua I found this album worthy of an immediate placement in my car's 6-CD cartridge where it will be played over and over as I traverse the country. I also think it's very well produced, the quality of the recording is right up there with the best, so if you want to show off your hifi system to discerning ears you won't go wrong by choosing Worrisome Heart as a demo disc. Nice tenor sax, piano, trumpet, bass, clarinet, cello and dobro. Not to mention a great voice. This lady's got talent, class and a highly promising future. Definitely recommended if you like the lady singing the blues.
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on 21 February 2009
Jazz isn't a genre I would normally say is a must but the voice that Melody Gardot has and the soft simple Jazz tunes that float through the album make this an unmissable entry into the world of Jazz.

Go on give it a go, you know you want to. You've come this far, go that extra step, you won't regret it.
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on 18 October 2007
The independent stateside release of Worrisome Heart is the best record I've heard in many a year. Now that she's signed to Universal, listeners worldwide now have the opportunity to enjoy it too. With a great mix of jazz, folk, and singer-songwriter styles, and spot-on perfect production by Glenn Barratt and Melody, what really makes this disc special is the exquisitely beautiful songwriting. This is her first full length recording and it's just an amazingly superb piece of work. Go see her sing live if you get the chance.
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VINE VOICEon 26 March 2008
Format: Audio CD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
here we have a new album of very nice laid back jazz style tunes. fitting somewhere between Diana Krall, Madeleine Peyroux and Michelle Schocked.
there is some excellent guitar work, Augmented with Hammond organ.
A refresing vocal style.
favorite songs the title track 'Worrisome heart' 'Some lessons' and 'Quiet fire'.

you wont be dissapponted if you buy, I am looking forward to that difficult second album as this already has a very high standard of songwriting and playing .
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Format: Audio CD|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
It is midnight. You are sitting in a sleazy jazz club in a Raymond Chandler-inspired world which seems to be characterised by sepia-tone. You're about to get your hat and step into the next scene, when Melody Gardot comes on the stage with Ken Prendergast on bass, Charlie Patieno on drums, Dave Posmontier on piano, Joel Bryan on that amazing Hammond, Matt Cappy on after-midnight trumpet, and Ron Kerber on the sleaziest tenor sax you ever heard. For four minutes your life stops as you drift into one of the most evocative late night jazz tracks you will hear for a long time.
The title track, Worrisome Heart is about as perfect as you can get. In just over four minutes, all the personalities of all the musicians are beautifully expressed, with Melody's creamy vocals elevating the track with meaning.
All that I need Is Love is a more Sinatra-inspired track, with vocallic dooby-doobying and a more upbeat, playful approach. Gone, the third track, is a minimally accompanied melancholy, with a whole verse of ba-da-bem-bo. Coming so soon after All that I need is Love, this really didn't quite work for me, and I was aching to turn back to Worrisome Heart. Come to think of it, once I've finished writing this review, I'll probably put Worrisome Heart on repeat and drowse in front of the fire until about 2 am.
Track 4, Sweet Memory, is a skilful piece of ragtime, which reminds us that that Melody is an accomplished guitarist who likes to have other guitarists around her, notably David Mowry of Beaucoup Blue on Dobro. Sweet stuff, which doesn't have to work hard to keep you interested.
Track 5, Some Lessons, is just a bit quiet and down for me at this point in the album -- but it has some powerful lyrics, like "don't think I can survive on bread and wine alone", which makes you wish that the designers had printed the lyrics in the album cover, instead of, or perhaps as well as, the interesting story of how the album came to be made. As the song moves on, the band begins to intrude, with their wonderfully spacious sound, setting you up for track six: Quiet Fire, another after-midnight club-jazz number with a wicked beat on the bass and guitar, and Joel Bryant's Hammond drifting in again. The song really comes alive on the chorus: "All I want is somebody to love me...". The walking bass kicks up on the bridge, which diminuendos down to a momentary section of free rhythm, taking us straight back to the chorus, and thence into the final verse, which is the first time we learn why the song is called "Quiet Fire". Superb stuff.
We're back to ragtime-influence for One Day, where Gardot accompanies herself on finger-picked guitar, with just a trumpet solo from guesting Stan Stotter to sweeten it. The guitar sound is wonderfully transparent, and completely fills the space beneath the vocals.
Melody is herself on piano for Love Me Like a River Does, with an introduction echoing Debussy. With just a simmer on the cymbals, a flutter on the trumpet, and the lightest touch of bass, this is a meditative piece, which picks up momentarily for the one line chorus: "love me that is all". There is a marvellously empty trumpet solo from Matt Cappy after the second chorus, with no more than Satie-esque piano chords to support it.
The penultimate track, Goodnite, is led in with solo acoustic bass, which takes the vocals and the rest of the band with it throughout the song. Barney McKenna gives us our only electric guitar solo of the album, though the bass is on that section is almost as complex. For some reason, Melody then goes into French, with a 78-style sound that takes the song to a slightly odd end -- or perhaps not, as a a single bar's rest takes us straight into the final Twilight, a one-minute-one-second two-guitar, bass and cymbal cadenza, finished off with the muttered 'That was Fun', which wraps up the whole album nicely as a sort of extended jam session from some particularly sleazy corner of heaven.

And that's it. The band leaves, and you're left, still in your raincoat, as the barman closes up, and you wander out into the sepia-toned darkness...
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