Karrin steps out on her own —
Throughout her fifteen albums, Karrin Allyson, five-time Grammy nominee in the Best Jazz Vocalist category, has demonstrated an uncanny ability to ‘get inside’ a lyric — to take over a song and reshape it into something magical.
“Ever since her impressive debut (I Didn’t Know About You, Concord, 1992) Karrin Allyson has successfully pulled material from both the pop and jazz world and it all works well with her voluptuous huskiness and rhythmic sensibility.” – Roger Crane, The International Review of Music
Stephen Holden, in a NY TIMES concert review, praised Allyson as “one of the most grounded singers working today,” with an “exceptionally keen eye for the smart, semi-obscure pop or jazz number that speaks directly to the moment.” In his WALL STREET JOURNAL preview, writer Will Friedwald buzzed, “she sings with amazing subtlety.” And in his lead JAZZTIMES MAGAZINE CD review, VOX critic Christopher Loudon said Allyson’s songs “shimmer with tender vibrancy.”
Now, in a brand-new album to be released on 3 August 2018, Karrin steps forward commandingly in a new role — as songwriter, revealing thirteen new songs in an astonishing range of styles and moods.
Teaming up with the remarkable L.A. producer and recording artist Chris Caswell and her very talented current working band — Miro Sprague on piano, Jeff Johnson on bass, Rod Fleeman on guitar and Jerome Jennings on drums and featuring guest artists Regina Carter on violin and the magisterial Houston Person on tenor saxophone, she has produced an album full of unexpected delights, including a guest appearance from mega-bassist Lee Sklar.
“It feels like coming home in a way,” says Allyson “As a young musician I was writing songs in a variety of styles, even before I discovered jazz. I loved the singer-songwriters of my youth and I followed their influence. Now, after years of performing all sorts of jazz and Brazilian and French music, I’m coming back to where I started.”
“These songs are quite varied in style — very ‘Allyson-like’, I suppose you could say. I’ve always loved to mix things up —
Take the title track “Wrap Up Some of that Sunshine” featuring violinist and MacArthur fellow Regina Carter — that’s more of a traditional swing- standard. And then there are a few unabashedly romantic ballads like “Just As Well” featuring Houston, “You Don’t Care”, (lyrics by my Dad) and “Time is a Funny Thing”.
I drop back more into my pop roots with songs like “As Long as I Know You Love Me”, “One of these Days”, “Happy Now”, and “Home”…and dig into the blues with “Right Here Right Now”, “Wish You Were Mine” and “Nobody Said Love was Easy”.
I am acutely aware of the political scene and its challenges and so I penned a couple songs begging for change; “Big Discount” and “Shake it Up”.”
“Though I take every song I sing very personally, of course, there’s something extremely personal –and scary too, about singing your own stuff… the audience gets to know you even better — And I’m ready for that.”
So, if you like soulful, sly, heartfelt, groovy songs with meaningful (and fun) lyrics — here they are — brand new, welcome and somehow beautifully familiar.
Karrin Allyson, voice and piano, Rhodes
Chris Caswell, Hammond B-3, accordion
Miro Sprague;, acoustic piano and Rhodes
Jeff Johnson, bass
Jerome Jennings. drums
Lee Sklar featured on “One of These Days”
Regina Carter (Some of That Sunshine, Time is a Funny Thing, Big Discount)
Houston Person (Right Here, Right Now, Just as Well, Nobody Said Love Was Easy)