By Preston Frazier, Something Else

No. 3. CATHERINE RUSSELL – ALONE TOGETHER: Never content to rest on the past, Catherine Russell delivers 13 stellar interpretations on this new Best of 2019 Jazz entry, not only highlighting her gifts as a vocalist but also as a band leader. Oh, and what a band: Guitarist Matt Munisteri, drummer Mark Mclean, bassist Tal Ronan and keyboardist Mark Shane conspire to deliver a timeless blend which is perfectly supportive to Russell. “He May Be Your Dog, But Here’s Wearing My Collar” has the smell of cheating all over it. The New Orleans feel of the dobro, Russell’s vocals and the piano paint a familiar and fun picture. This portrait of a vixen is funny, and compelling. “I Only Have Eyes For You” is a surprising addition, given that there are so many versions. But Russell and her small ensemble create magic, even if the spell is well worn. Perhaps that’s the charm of Alone Together: Catherine Russell is a stellar artist not just because of her enchanting voice, but also because of her gift as an interpreter and her passion for the music.

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