The Sirens Records

SR5009: Melancholy Serenade   -- Kimberly Gordon Trio

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Chicago native Kimberly Gordon makes a huge impression with her debut recording as a leader. It's not just the singer's rich alto voice that wins over the listener, but her ability to communicate. Joined by pianist Chris Foreman and bassist Joe Policastro, Gordon's selection of songs is adventurous, mixing standards, classic jazz compositions, and even pop of the 1950s and '60s. … She makes her voice sound like it has the wear and tear of a jazz veteran in her swinging treatment of "As Long as I Live," while playfully switching to a childlike chant for effect, then scatting to Foreman's Erroll Garner-like piano. … Rarely does an artist sound so seasoned on a debut recording, this is yet another laudable CD issued by the tiny Chicago-based label The Sirens.”

Ken Dryden, All Music Guide

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Press / Music CD Reviews

“…Kimberly Gordon has a smoothly warm contralto-ish voice, in which she has enough confidence to take both melodic and rhythmic liberties, without compromising the contextual integrity of the songs she chooses to sing. … She opens with the verse to “Got It Bad” and luxuriates in it for well over the first minute of the track. She makes some delicious minor adjustments to the melodic line of “What Am I” and swings it handily. She's at her playful best on “Too Close,” where she goes off the beat on the phrase (can you guess?) “off your beat.” She demonstrates her vocalese on a somber “Melancholy,” and risks slowing “ Sandman” down to a crawl. I like the way she sometimes clips words for rhythmic emphasis and smears phrases. Her ballad treatments of “Wee Small” and “ Incurably” are thoughtful and ardent. Pianist Foreman has worked with her for well over a decade, and their comfort level is evident in the way they just naturally stay in step. He plays some brimmingly lyrical lines on “Too Close.” Joe Policastro joined the trio in 2003 and fits in neatly. He shines on “Nothin' But,” where he opens front and center. Overall, there's a certain winning modesty to the entire session, which, when coupled with this singer's natural vocal fluency, makes this a disc that enters the lists well above average.”

Alan Bargebuhr, Cadence May 2005
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“A well-respected jazz critic once wrote of Kimberly Gordon saying "…if sapphires could sing, I imagine they'd have a similar sound." There is little (if anything) that can be added to praise as high as that other than to say this is simply a tremendous set of wonderful jazz. Gordon's voice soars the Chicago skyline as much as it walks the dark and cold streets and her covers of Ellington's I Got It Bad And That Ain't Good/ What Am I Here For, and I Ain't Got Nothin' But The Blues are incredible. Chris Foreman's piano work and Joe Policastro's double bass lay a smooth foundation while Gordon's vocals are delectable, sexy, and heartfelt.

CR, Roots and Rhythm
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