The Way You Look Tonight
Beautifully sung, hard-swinging renditions of classic Jazz Standards
THE WAY YOU LOOK TONIGHT
As an award-winning actress, musician, screenwriter, composer and arranger, Jennifer Porter leads a very busy life.
It is obvious from listening to The Way You Look Tonight that Jennifer has a beautiful voice, a real feeling for vintage lyrics and the ability to swing at every tempo. Featured on the CD are pianist / accordionist Sonny Barbato, guitarist Kevin Barry, trumpeter Trent Austin, saxophonist Matt Langley, drummers Les Harris, Jr. and Dave Jamrog, and bassists Jim Lyden and Aubrey Harris. Each contributes colorful solos and blends in very well with Jennifer's voice.
The set opens with "The Way You Look Tonight," a happy version reminiscent of Billie Holiday's recording with Teddy Wilson. Austin's exuberant trumpet is a major asset. "There's A Small Hotel," inspired by Ella Fitzgerald's version from her Rodgers and Hart Songbook project, is sung sweetly and with feeling. Duke Ellington's "Sophisticated Lady" is taken as a tasteful duet with pianist Barbato.
"I'll Get By," usually performed as a slow ballad, is taken as a medium-tempo cooker with some fine tenor from Langley. Jennifer's expressive vocal on "A Foggy Day" is followed by a creative trumpet solo and a colorful tradeoff by piano and drums. After a quietly passionate version of "Don't Explain," Jennifer swings "There Is No Greater Love," which has an excellent chorus from guitarist Barry.
A playful and sensuous "Ain't Misbehavin'" and a spirited "I'm Beginning To See The Light" precede Jennifer's heartfelt duet with guitarist Barry on "Can't Help Lovin' That Man." The set concludes with a rollicking "Rolling In My Sweet Baby's Arms" which features infectious New Orleans parade rhythms, Sonny Barbato on accordion, and a party atmosphere that is pure joy.
Audiences will love the way Jennifer Porter uplifts songs with her simple and effective delivery, her phrasing, and the beauty of her voice.
–Scott Yanow, author of ten books including The Jazz Singers, Trumpet Kings, Jazz On Film and Jazz On Record 1917-76