With Love is Jeremy Fox’s debut effort as a bandleader initiated by his Doctoral project in Jazz Composition at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami. His work as an arranger, conductor, producer, and engineer on the album shows a talent for choosing corresponding vocalists to accompany the orchestration. Ten singers are featured on the recording, each distinct bringing out the melodic nuances and luster of the tracks.
Derek Fawcett exhibits a touch of showtunes swing liken to Harry Connick, Jr. in “Get Out of Town” while Kate McGarry demonstrates a Doris Day-style polish in “All My Tomorrows.” Fox’s selection of jazz standards goes through a gamut of eras from the ’50s cabaret blues shimmer of “That Old Feeling” to the ’60s-tinged balladry swells of “Not While I’m Around” performed by Sunny Wilkinson whose glossy strokes emote a depth of pathos emblematic of Barbara Streisand. The album jumps to a ’70s R&B-fringed groove in “Girl Talk” cushioning the soulful vocal inflections honed by Wendy Pedersen, then shifts to a smooth bossa nova glisten in “Dindi” lubricating the vocal glides of Rose Max and Ramatis Moraes.
The somber tone of the horns and strings in “Friendship” enfolds Anders Edenroth’s vocals in swaths of flickering embers that propel a classic power ballad vibe. The orchestration continues along this path of tranquilizing atmospherics through “I’m Glad There Is You” performed by vocalist Peter Eldridge. Lauren Kinhan gives “Moonray” a sultry glint reflective of Shirley Bassey and vocalist Kate Reid brings a starry luster to “So Many Stars” silhouette in floating strings which produce a shower of dreamy waves.
Garnering a reputation as a clinician and coach by conducting a variety of jazz camps and workshops across the US and Canada, Jeremy Fox made the leap into recording artist with his CD With Love. He has written for several of the vocalists who appear on the album which accounts for the easy fluency in the tracks. Fox dips the tracks in jazz palettes that cover a number of phases, which swing music has undergone over the years. The songs move from bluesy cabaret swing to delivering tracks with a romping showtunes verve and power ballad polish. With Love is a product of jazz music’s evolution as much as it is a musical creation which shows Jeremy Fox’s talent as a bandleader.
Jeremy Fox – arranger, conductor, producer, and engineer, Daniel Strange – piano, René Toledo – acoustic and electric guitars, Geoffrey Saunders – bass, Michael Piolet – drums, and vocals – Kevin Mahogany, Kate McGarry, Peter Eldridge, Lauren Kinhan, Sunny Wilkinson, Derek Fawcett, Kate Reid, Wendy Pedersen, Rose Max, Anders Edenroth, and Ramatis Moraes
That Old Feeling, All My Tomorrows, Three Little Words, Get Out of Town, Not While I’m Around, Girl Talk, Dindi, Friendship, I’m Glad There Is You, Moonray, So Many Stars