Carolyn Joyce and The Tony Pacini Trio
CD release Party for ‘This is Carolyn Joyce’
Wilf’s – Saturday November 3rd, 2007
Carolyn Joyce www.carolynjoyce.net - vocals
Tony Pacini www.tonypacini.com - piano
Ed Bennett http://edbennett.net - bass
Tim Rap- drums
Wilf's is an elegant restaurant and lounge attached to Union Station in downtown Portland , featuring excellent food and wonderful jazz. It is non-smoking and many weekend nights some of the finest Portland players can be heard here. The atmosphere is decidedly elegant and inviting for both quiet conversation and listening. The $5 cover charge was much too low for the quality of the music. (Carolyn even reduced the price of CD sales by that amount!)
First set starts with the extremely tight Toni Pacini Trio. Laid back version of ‘Freddie the Freeloader' then a very fast second tune (unknown), then a beautiful and engaging original stride piece. The audience is now in Tony's able grasp. He introduces Carolyn and we're off. She gets the ball rolling with ‘I Only Have Eyes for You'. The audience is full of many good friends and she looks and sounds like she can't wait to share all this music! This is a very powerfully grounded and joyful evening.
‘Just Squeeze Me'
Carolyn is a stylist, and her enjoinder ‘squeeeze me' is delicious. No rushing!
‘I Wish I Knew'
‘Without A Song' This is one of my favorites, done with authority. It shares the longing many of us have for a better world, where the understanding of the importance of music is central to our lives.
‘A Little Tear' Wonderful song, unknown to me before this, exceptional lyrics and song form.
‘ Born to Be Blue' A Mel Torme' song surprisingly! Soulful ballad, beautifully rendered.
‘Speak Low' This tune featured an absolutely sublime drum solo by Tim.
‘Summer Me, Winter Me' by Michel LeGrand. Absolutely a traffic stopper. (…And with your kisses morning me, evening me…) Carolyn delivers this song of joyful romance with deep contentment, first as a ballad much like the Barbara Streisand version, without the schmaltz, then she re-interprets it as an upbeat playful romp. Great arrangement! I'd like to learn this one.
Carolyn has unerring tonation which adds to her considerable power. On top of that she has an exceptional sense of timing, very jazzy and very warm. Tony's remarkable piano playing is so refined rhythmically, that it brings Carolyn's own gifts in that department into focus. Who can do this? Amazing work in all positions, and Carolyn has found exceptionally supportive players to help bring her voice out. This ensemble has a very tight group feel. Tony Pacini, Ed Bennett and Tim Rap, are the consummate accompanists in their roles.
‘You Better Go Now'
‘Pick Yourself Up, Dust Yourself Off…'
‘Give Me the Simple Life'
The CD Release party was very well attended. I got there a half hour before the performance and had trouble finding a seat! Carolyn is a truly gifted singer, and we are very lucky to have her here. I won't come so late next time!