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July 13, 2024

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Maria Muldaur
A Woman Alone With The Blues . . . Remembering Peggy Lee (Telarc)

By: Mark A. Lawrence the IV

This collection of jazzy-blues celebrates the songs of Peggy Lee and melts across your senses, as Maria Muldaur's voice is a dead on fit for Lee's sultry music. This album fills the head with images of long legs and the sharp style of the Jazz queens of the 30's and 40's. The seduction of "Some Cats Know" feels like you need a cigarette after the kind of sex that last for days. There is such a jazz vibe to this album; you'd think it was recorded decades earlier. Even the snappier "Everything Is Moving Too Fast," with its jumpy bass line, sporadically aggressive guitar and the swinging boogie-woogie of the piano gives the song a soulfully deep groove. This wonderful album demonstrates well the struggle of defining singers like Billie Holiday and Nina Simone as a blues or jazz singer. Like these two greats, Muldaur has the presence and skills to fill both roles and to say she leans one direction over the other would be a terrible disservice. Rating: A
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