Kurt Elling: 1619 Broadway

The Brill Building Project

Album review
Kurt Elling: 1619 Broadway

Kurt Elling

1619 Broadway: The Brill Building Project

Label: Concord
Media: CD
Genre: Jazz

The most consistently adventurous, self-assuredly swinging, unabashedly romantic and audaciously hip singer of his generation, Chicago native Kurt Elling pays tribute to the tune factory in midtown Manhattan that produced so many American popular songs in the 50s and 60s. Joining forces with longtime collaborator, pianist-arranger Laurence Hobgood, Elling re-imagines familiar pop tunes by such prolific songwriting teams as Barry Mann-Cynthia Weill, Jerry Leiber-Mike Stoller, and Gerry Goffin- Carole King. Following a reharmonized romp through “On Broadway” (a 1963 hit for The Drifters), Elling has his way with Sinatra’s 1958 “Come Fly With Me” and Sam Cooke’s 1957 “You Send Me.” He goes lush and lovey on Bacharach and David’s “A House Is Not A Home,” then channels his inner jivester on Leiber- Stoller’s spoken-word rap, “Shopping for Clothes.” Other highlights include an intimate reading of Carole King’s “So Far Away,” a tongue-in-cheek take on Goffin-King’s “Pleasant Valley Sunday,” and a tender duet with Hobgood on Paul Simon’s “American Tune.” A vocalese on Duke Ellington’s swaggering “Tutti for Cootie” finishes The Brill Project. On his last outing, 2009’s Dedicated to You: The Music of Coltrane and Hartman, Elling came away with a Grammy. He may score his second with this gem. 

More Info

  • primary artist, Kurt Elling
  • CD

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