In Love Again
20 Best Vocal CD's of 2009, W. Royal Stokes, Jazz House Diaries
In Love Again is a body of music evincing the mystery of the human “heart” with its inexplicable range of romantic impulse, from fascination to lust to obsession. Throughout the collection, the uncertainty, the falling in and the falling out, the elation and the despair are expressed.
In Love Again opens with the erotic desperation of “Never Let Me Go” followed by the unapologetic confession of “I Fall In Love Too Easily.” Marten's own song “Reinventing Me” (derived from a composition by Clem Ehoff) suggests the lengths to which we will go in the quest of our heart’s desire. Jerry Herman’s poignant “If He Walked Into My Life” is a soul-searching revelation, and “Alice In Wonderland” if offered as a breezy respite from the pain of self-doubt. “Alfie,” ponders the question, “What’s it all about?” and the masterpiece “You Must Believe In Spring” articulates the reply. “I’m Old Fashioned” precedes the tender “Skylark,” while “Like A Lover” offers a Bergman lyric of complete adoration. “Cry Me A River” delivers a bitter, ironic message to a betrayer, and the jaundice is diluted by “An Occasional Man,” a light-hearted paean to plain old-fashioned lust. Near the end we ask “Where Do You Start?” a tour-de-force by Johnny Mandel and the magnificent Bergmans that addresses the dissolution of a established relationship. “Hello Young Lovers” is a salute from a retired player in the game and games of romantic love.
The depth and sensibility of Larry Willis’s minimal arrangements allowed Marten to freely interpret the lyrics and music of In Love Again. His powerful and moving solos provide the eloquent “other side” to their musical dialogue. In Love Again is dedicated to Shirley Horn, their beloved friend who made this possible.
Is It Love?
Nominated Best Vocal Jazz CD by JPF (The People's Grammy).
All original music by band members, all lyrics written by Gail Marten. A fine addition to your collection and for those special moments where jazz is the only fit! Each and every lyric, in each and every song, every turn of a lyric, is connected one to the other, and lays out a suite of epos—an epic theme—love!
The title song from Is It Love? was First Prize Winner in the Jazz Category of the 2005 UK Songwriting Contest. Two other songs from this CD, "Big Girl Blues" and "We Can Learn to Fly" made it to the finals in this international competition. Billboard award winner. Released September 2005.
With her exotic sensual tones Ms. Marten can get across what most feel but rarely admit. “Dream With Me” is such an example of pure unfiltered passion-coated lyrics. Her vocals, with eloquence, reach out to that lover inside of all of us. The piano piece just adds that perfect flair of romance to this soft-spoken musical ballad. For fans of jazz after hours or amid a hidden café with that other set of eyes adjoining yours, this is the music score. Ms. Marten and Ehoff have produced the quintessential song for those times that one always hopes to dream about. A fine addition to your casual collection and for those special moments where jazz is the only fit!
Nominated Best Jazz Vocal Album by JPF (The People's Grammy.) First Prize in the 2003 UK Songwriting Contest in the Jazz category for "Heaven On A Tropic Shore." Named as "Best of the 2000's" by Women's Radio. Also awards from The John Lennon Songwriting Competition and Billboard International. Released 2002.
All originals written by Marten & Ehoff with all lyrics written by Gail Marten with the exception of "Round Midnight." Clem Ehoff’s group melds jazz improvisation in a harmonically sophisticated manner driven by a pulsating latin groove . . . a veritable paella of sound and rhythm. Gail Marten not only sings lyrics which tell a story, but recites a vivid prose which demonstrates that she has a hip awareness of life—delivered with a voice of sweetness and verve.
Gail has a particularly sensuous voice. She not only stirs passion, but she generates reflective thought. Delicious, as the melding of passion and intellect often is…the girl next door dressed in a black sheath! The rhythmic surge of Alfonso Rondon and Marty Knepp lets the listener know that there is no untamed spirit in this percussive melange. It is scintillating, bubbling and brilliant.
Beyond The Rainbow
The mix of Ehoff originals and Marten singing gorgeous standards, makes this CD a treasure trove of sparkling wonders. Marten creates a memorable character through her songs. Ehoff has crafted a sound that suits Marten’s voice and savvy instincts. His understated piano phrasing, marked by open spaces and a leisurely swing, fits Marten’s conversational, seen-it-all delivery. Her fascination with Brazilian music gives the songs a tropical, midafternoon languor, even supplying George Gershwin’s “Summertime” with a Rio beat and a breathy stoicism. …Marten creates a memorable character through her songs—a woman who has seen too much to be naively romantic but who has enjoyed it too much to forgo love’s pleasures. In Marten, Ehoff has found a partner who gives voice to the well-seasoned textures of his music. After several of her vocals a piano instrumental such as the Bill Evans tribute, “Remembering Bill,” almost seems to sing beneath Ehoff’s touch.
Gold Edition Jazz Series, Gail Marten
2-CD, 26 tracks. Import.
Available at Amazon.com, CDUniverse.com, BestBuy.com
"Marten is an adept lyricist, pulling interesting little rhymes out of unusual places. You don’t
often see wordplay like this unless you’re reading the lyrics of the likes of Porter or Kern."
"An artist of rare sensivity and taste with the unique ability to get inside a song and convey its meaning to the fullest" . . .
“Ms. Marten caresses a jazz vocal with the authority of authenticity, and projects an innate awareness of how the songwriter might wish to hear the song sung. Her lyrical approach to standards brings an exciting new dimension to the music. She radiates a warmth and sophistication that is completely captivating.”
Gail Marten's music is also available on the following compilation CDs produced in Singapore:
Greatest Audiophile Voices Vol. 2; Greatest Audiophile Voices Vol. 3; Greatest Audiophile Voices Volume 4; Female Jazz Standard Vol. 3; The Best of Pop Jazz; Love, Jazz; Just Jazz; Jazz & I; A Little Pop, A Little Jazz Vol. 4; Female Jazz Vol. 3; When Blues Meets Jazz; Movies Classic In Jazz Vol. 2; Jazz Unlimited Vol. 3; Jazz Stories; Bossa Stories; Sentimental Journey; Best Hi-Fi Female Voices; In A Sentimental Mood; Jazz Unlimited Vol. 4; True Audiophile 34 Jazz Standards; Movies Classic in Jazz (Deluxe); The Little Jazz Box; The Little Jazz Box Vol. 2; Greatest Audiophile Voices