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JaRon Eames
Sounds Goot To Me!

1. Doggin' Around (Tarnapol)
2. Save Your Love for Me (Johnson)
3. Shake Rattle and Roll (Calhoun)
4. Song Is You (Hammerstein/Kern)
5. I Want a Little Girl (Mencher/Moll)
6. My One and Only Love (Mellin/Wood)
7. Pettin' and Pokin (Jordan)
8. Stormy Monday/Route 66 (Troup/Walker)
9. Guilty (Akst/Kahn)
10. Them There Eyes (Pinkard/T/T)
11. Change Is Gonna Come (Cooke)

JaRon Eames,
Amy Quint,
Michael Weisberger,
alto & tenor sax
Ethan Mann,
Akira Ando,
Walter Perkins,




JaRon Eames literally came down to Earth to start his vocal career. He was employed by Japan Airlines and quit in 1977 to start his career as an entertainer. His objective was to revive the salon singer (the male counterpart to cabaret) style of entertainment. He has worked with Barry Harris, Dorothy Donegan, and a host of other prestigious jazz personalities. Sounds Good to Me! is the singer's second album, with a play list of 11 tunes designed to show his versatility. They also show his very supple and flexible set of vocal chords as he warbles and trills soul, the blues, funky R&B, and high-steppin' swing tunes. Eames sounds like Lou Rawls, if Rawls worked in a higher register. He also uses a slight vibrato to very good advantage on tunes such as "Guilty" and "Doggin Around."
The kick-off tune brings funk to the fore buttressed by Michael Weisberger's Hal Singer-like tenor, which provides the rhythm to Eames' blues. In contrast, Weisberger's sax uses dulcet tones behind Eames' emotional version of "My One and Only Love." Eames appears to come from the same school as singers and groups like Johnny Ray and the Platters, who felt that no one would take them seriously unless they brought a sense of desperation to their voice.
Eames can swing as well as emote, as on "Shake, Rattle and Roll" and a faster-than-the-speed-of-light "Them There Eyes," where he unpacks his scatting and other wordless vocalizing apparatus. Matters get downright earthy with "I Want a Little Girl."
Pianist Amy Quint, who hung in there throughout the session and provided excellent support for the singer, gets to show off a minimalist approach to the piano with some solo time. And Weisberger is still wailing away on the sax (this time the alto). A highlight track is the fervent rendering of Sam Cooke's gospel-oriented "A Change Is Gonna Come." This is a happy combination of intense, passionate singing with swinging and some fun thrown in to lighten things up. Eames obviously enjoys what he's doing, and judging from this album, is a vocal force to be reckoned with. Recommended.
Dave Nathan - All Music Guide

JaRon Eames is gaining a degree of recognition lately among the late-night TV crowd on the island known as Manhattan. That's because his jazz interview show, The JaRon Eames Show, is televised on community Channel 34. Featuring interviews with legends like Oscar Peterson, Nancy Wilson, Jimmy Scott and Randy Weston, the real star of the show is Eames himself. With unflagging curiosity, he probes his guests for nuggets of information, and surprisingly, they provide such nuggets! The most interesting feature of the show, as one studies the faces of his famous guests, is their ease in talking to him.
Since his profile is rising, it may be useful to review Eames last CD from 1996, Sounds Good To Me! The revelation of the CD is the fact that the style of Eames seems to arise from the influences of the vocalists he invites onto his show. Indeed, by referring to the well-known styles of Jimmy Scott, Nancy Wilson or Dakota Staton, Eames has developed his own niche as a get-out-of-your-seat-and-dance practitioner of a style that blends R&B with jazz. That's why Sam Cooke's "A Change Is Gonna Come" fits in with the repertoire of the remaining tunes like "Save Your Love For Me" or "Them There Eyes."
Infusing a bluesy feel into all of the tunes, no matter how he approaches them, Eames can go from the blues shouter on "Stormy Monday" to the rapid-fire articulation and scat of "Them There Eyes." Even in the midst of the machine-gunning of words, Eames twists the phrasing to swoop or dip or prod so that the performance becomes an energetic elucidation of the theme instead of a technical exercise.
Eames combines his good nature with musical story-telling on Louis Jordan's "Pettin' And Pokin'," wherein he rediscovers the timeless ability of Jordan's jump to entertain listeners with wordplay and infectious arrangements. "Shake Rattle & Roll" bypasses the rock-n-roll evolution of the tune to remind the listener of the tune's roots in the blues, akin to the realization of the true meaning of the words to "Ain't Nothin' But A Hound Dog," as sung by Big Mama Thornton. Similarly, "Route 66" follows seamlessly from the slow Memphis blues feel of "Stormy Monday" rather than taking the finger-snapping route that the song has assumed over the years.
"Doggin' Around," which has become Eames' de facto theme song, encapsulates the strengths of his music: blues from an R&B perspective that merges with jazz, the barroom type of singing that draws in the listeners and excites the crowds, the use of his voice to emphasize the dramatic essence of a tune (in this case, the crying elongation of the significant word following "Stop!"), the compelling narrative, and a universal theme (such as cheating).
As jokingly serious musicians like Louis Jordan, irresistible jazz/R&B singers like Jimmy Scott, the compelling blues shouters like Big Joe Turner or master jazz vocalists like Joe Williams have passed on, we are fortunate that committed entertainers like JaRon Eames are carrying on the tradition.
Don Williamson - All About Jazz

JaRon Eames at Shutters Supper Club
This band had JaRon Eames on vocals, Gene Gee on tenor sax, Amy Quint Mignon on piano, Bob Cunningham on bass, and Walter Perkins on drums. Originally from New Orleans, JaRon Eames is a blues and Jazz singer who also hosts a weekly cable TV show in Manhattan. He started off the evening at Shutters with a blues medley. "Drink Muddy Water" and "Everyday I Have the Blues" were several of the selections. He had a swinging backup band and rhythm section that looked as good as they played. Amy, Bob, Walter and Gene wore tuxes, while JaRon wore a white suit.
Next was Irving Berlin's "Cheek to Cheek." The piece was well arranged, with everyone reading parts. JaRon brings out a positive groove, he's a skillful entertainer. There was a mixed crowd and a nice atmosphere at the club. After "Cheek to Cheek," they did "Ain't Misbehavin'." JaRon was scatting in between his phrases, using dynamics. Gene's sax solo was smooth and swinging, and Amy, the pianist showed off her chops to good advantage.
"You're Not the Kind of a Girl for a Boy Like Me" is a worthy song, made famous by Sassy, and JaRon sang it with a good deal of feeling. The sax had some nice scales and riffs, but he wasn't as strong here as on the blues.
More blues put the entire band in its element. JaRon let them have it with "Stormy Monday," While the drummer banged away in triplets and the bassist kept a simple 4/4 walk. Bob took several choruses on bass, bowing with perfect intonation. A big surprise was Walter's drum solo. Holding the ride cymbal with one hand, he played a melody on it with one stick! I've never seen anything like it, one little eighth note at a time. The pianist got into it during her solo with tremolos and two-handed runs in double octaves.
The group was recording a CD at this occasion, and I was glad to be a part of that process. I had a chance to speak to Walter Perkins in between sets. The drummer really knows his music. He's worked with a lot of musicians, among them Ahmad Jamal, Carmen McRae, Jim Hall, Art Farmer, Charles Mingus. I asked about his style of supporting the soloists with his driving swing. He answered, "I don't want to get in anybody's way, I just want to have some fun. Music, to me, is a matter of warmth. It doesn't matter who I'm playing with, as long as it's a team, with all of us playing together. It's like having a million dollars in your pocket when everybody's playing together and people are enjoying it. Ain't no one trying to outdo no one."
I asked Walter about the solo he did with one cymbal. He said, "I did that on a couple of albums, one with Art Farmer and Jim Hall, the other Al Cohn and Zoot Sims. They were beautiful to work with. If I can help somebody in some way through my music, that's the secret to a long life."

New York vocalist JaRon Eames phrases expertly, swings righteously, and warbles dynamically on this compelling independently- produced debut album of 11 jazz-blues classics by Louis Jordan, Jerome Kern, T. Bone Walker, Buddy Johnson and others. In any tempo, Eames demonstrates commendable mid-range vocal control and precise sense of time. Amy Quint (piano), Akira Ando (bass), Walter Perkins (drums), Ethan Mann (guitar), and Michael Weisberger (tenor & alto saxes) provide fine solos and superb rhythm backing for Eames to sing his bluesy heart out.
Nancy Ann Lee - JazzTimes

Finally we come to JaRon Eames who gets this thing right. Eames' bag, as demonstrated on his last CD is to sing relaxed, Jazzy versions of old rhythm and blues classics. This time he delves into the repertoires of Sam Cooke, Jackie Wilson, Big Joe Turner and Louis Jordan and comes out a winner each time. Eames has a high tenor voice close to Clyde McPhatter's and he uses it well, massaging their old songs at slow, strutting tempos. Most of the arrangements are true to the R'n'B big beat ideal, through "Shake Rattle and Roll" has its beat smoothed over. A couple of standards are also added to the mix. "The Song Is You" is taken at a blistering tempo and "Guilty" is done in a mannered torch style. As for the musicians, Amy Quint plays good hard-charging piano throughout and Ethan Mann plays breezy single string blues guitar solos like T-Bone Walker. Eames has settled into a unique and attractive style. Hopefully he'll find an audience for it someday.
Jerome Wilson - Cadence

The play list includes songs from Louis Jordan, T-Bone Walker, and Sam Cooke, but it's the endorsement from jazz chanteuse Dakota Staton that gives away the basic feeling of JaRon Eames' latest disc. With a vocal style that brings to mind both Al Jarreau and George Benson, Eames delivers his material in a polished "lounge" style with smooth jazz arrangements. Sounds Good To Me should please fans of the form.
PRA - Living Blues

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Data pubblicazione: 30/11/2001

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