Time, Seasons and the Moon – Scott Yanow, L.A. Jazz Scene
Linda Tate has a distinctive voice, a very appealing way of phrasing lyrics and is always in tune. She respects the original themes (often sticking close to the melodies) while still making the standards she performs sound like her own. For her recent CD, she performs 17 songs all having something to do with time, seasons or the moon. The set starts out on a very high level with a delightful bossa-nova version of “I Wished On The Moon” and a rendition of “’Tis Autumn” featuring veteran Johnny Frigo (who is just about the only swing violinist still around) and tenor-saxophonist Richie Fudoli. Throughout the date, Tate is joined by many little-known but talented Chicago-based musicians including pianists Bradley Parker-Sparrow (who, with Joanie Pallatto, runs the Southport label), Bobby Schiff and Bradley Williams, acoustic guitarist Paulinho Garcia, tenor-saxophonist Steve Eisen, guitarists Curtis Robinson and Paulinho Garcia (who sings a little on “I Concentrate On You” and Steve Swallow’s “Falling Grace”), vibraphonist Kathy Kelly, bassists Jim Cox and John Whitfield, drummer Greg Sergo and percussionist Heitor Garcia. Richie Fudoli, who also plays flute and cool-toned clarinet, is a major asset throughout.
Other highlights include a waltz version of “It Might As Well Be Spring,” “September In The Rain” (with Frigo) and “Moonlight In Vermont.” The second half of the set loses a bit of the momentum (no Frigo or Fudoli after the 11th cut and a few too many ballads) but still holds one’s interest. Linda Tate is a talent well worth discovering and Time, Seasons and the Moon offers many fine examples of her singing.