Various Authors 8:30 a.m., July 22
Teagan Taylor: "Hello"
This is a striking pop-vocal effort, beautifully recorded.
Imperial Beach musician Teagan Taylor has a brand-new CD about to drop, Hello, which might come as a surprise to those who only know her as a solid, mainstream trumpeter and occasional vocalist.
Indeed, Hello is first and foremost, a pop-vocal album, and it's really quite good. Brilliantly recorded by Dave Blackburn at Beat N' Track studio in Fallbrook, this disc boasts a pristine and detailed sound along with cogent performances.
Taylor has a very solid command of pitch, and she avoids the miscreant abuse of melisma that has damned a generation of otherwise promising singers in her peer group. The most obvious comparison to me is that of Norah Jones, with whom she shares a similar range and fondness for nuance.
Opening with a strong reggae feel powered by the percolating bass of Dylan Taylor "I Dig You," toggles between the island groove and a Burt Bacharach type bridge and is full of centered pitch and attractive vulnerability.
"Hello," begins with pianist Ed Kornhauser's Fender Rhodes approximation coupled with Blackburn's synth-pad to establish a very '70s platform where Taylor's connection to Jones seems especially strong -- eschewing drama for color and clarity -- and squeezing in a short, sweet trumpet solo. Throughout the album, tasteful horn charts by Ms. Taylor and her father, guitarist Tim Taylor sweep in and out with great efficacy.
"Him & Her," bounces along from bar 1, soaring over the lilting motion of ukulele man Meir Shitrit, who also contributes bouzouki parts.
Taylor waits until the last few tunes to address anything resembling jazz. The old-time swing feel of "Fantasyland," is perfect for Taylor's aesthetic-- driven by Tim Taylor's Freddie Green comping and Django-esque solo, Ms. Taylor even dials up an effective growl.
"Flying Machine," represents her finest moment, to these ears -- containing both her most realized vocal which glides on the languid brushwork of drummer Duke Ventra and a voluptuous horn solo that hits dead center.