Jane Scheckter: I’ll Take Romance

This is a CD that encourages replaying. Vocals surround one with warmth. Arrangements (Tedd Firth) are graceful, rich, collaborative. Selections carry one along without breaking auditory sway. Musicianship is grand.

“Love, I Hear” (Stephen Sondheim) opens with only Jay Leonhart’s cool bass. Scheckter’s vocal is light, balmy. Phrasing winks. I dare you not to grin through Leonhart’s signature scat. “I’ll Be Easy to Find” (Bart Howard) emerges longlined. The singer is vulnerable, invested. We believe her. Piano is tender. Warren Vaché’s cornet adds chiaroscuro. A slow dance, it ends with hummed flourish, as if cursive.

During “I’ll Take Romance”(Ben Oakland/Oscar Hammerstein II), the performer connects lyric lines making thoughts conversational. Piano offers the glissando of a giggling brook. “Moments Like This” (Burton Lane/Frank Loesser) arrives a country club foxtrot. Soft consonants create almost visual penumbras. Vaché’s savvy, mellow horn adds color. The song is urbane. Scheckter brings sophistication to every choice, yet none are too polished to feel. The artist is seasoned and womanly.

“My Foolish Heart” (Victor Young/Ned Washington) seems airbrushed. Vocal brims with anticipation. Cole Porter’s “After You” dances to Peter Grant’s light percussion. Lyrics sway and twirl. Many of these arrangements conjure footwork. “I’m Gonna Lock My Heart and Throw Away the Key” swings (Jimmy Eaton/ Terry Shand). The song is sassy. “If Love Were All” (Noel Coward) floats in like meditative breathing. Subtle vibrato enhances amorous sincerity. The performer’s shoulders must rise and fall as she sighs.

“Here I Am In Love Again” (Moose Charlip/Chuck Sweeney) sounds surprised, wary, pleased, hopeful. Scheckter’s tones are often prismatic encompassing several emotions. Piano and bass act in tandem. Brushes etch moonlight. “You Are Not My First Love” (Bart Howard/John Peter Windsor) is a saucy Astaire tap. In duet with Nicolas King, “Isn’t It a Pity” (George & Ira Gershwin) finds two crooners ruefully agreeing. Velvety voices work well together. “What Is There to Say?” (Vernon Duke/EY Harburg) saunters embellished by Vaché’s luminous cornet. “What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?” (Michel Legrand/ Alan and Marilyn Bergman) is beautifully understated.

Song choices are excellent. There isn’t one that doesn’t fit or bear real listening.

Jane Scheckter – Vocals
Tedd Firth – MD/Piano
Jay Leonhart – Bass, Peter Grant – Drums, Warren Vaché – cornet and Flugelhorn
Guest Vocalist – Nicolas King

About Alix Cohen (1725 Articles)
Alix Cohen is the recipient of ten New York Press Club Awards for work published on this venue. Her writing history began with poetry, segued into lyrics and took a commercial detour while holding executive positions in product development, merchandising, and design. A cultural sponge, she now turns her diverse personal and professional background to authoring pieces about culture/the arts with particular interest in artists/performers and entrepreneurs. Theater, music, art/design are lifelong areas of study and passion. She is a voting member of Drama Desk and Drama League. Alix’s professional experience in women’s fashion fuels writing in that area. Besides Woman Around Town, the journalist writes for Cabaret Scenes, Broadway World, TheaterLife, and Theater Pizzazz. Additional pieces have been published by The New York Post, The National Observer’s Playground Magazine, Pasadena Magazine, Times Square Chronicles, and ifashionnetwork. She lives in Manhattan. Of course.