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Album review: Dee Dee’s Feathers is a joyful collaboration for jazz fans

Grammy- and Tony award-winner Dee Dee Bridgewater skills are fully displayed on Dee Dee’s Feathers.
DeeDee’s Feathers by DeeDee Bridgewater.
DeeDee’s Feathers by DeeDee Bridgewater.

Dee Dee’s Feathers

Dee Dee Bridgewater

(Sony Music)

Three stars

Grammy and Tony Award winner Dee Dee Bridgewater’s skills are fully on display on Dee Dee’s Feathers, a joyful collaboration with trumpeter Irvin Mayfield’s New Orleans Jazz Orchestra.

Among the traditional songs, Bridgewater shows her fine and mellow side on What A Wonderful World and Do You Know What It Means, ballads popularised by Louis Armstrong, with Mayfield contributing some heart-tugging trumpet solos.

On Hoagy Carmichael’s New Orleans, she cuts loose by making her own voice blow like a trumpet. The new songs on the album are also steeped in the tradition. Mayfield’s Congo Square, a tribute to the traditional birthplace of jazz, features guest percussionist Bill Summers’s African-style percussions, while the wistfully romantic ballad C’est Ici Que Je T’Aime, celebrates the city’s French tradition.

Bridgewater and Mayfield conceived this project to promote their collaboration on the newly opened New Orleans Jazz Market, the city’s first solely-dedicated jazz performance and education centre. Located in a converted department store in the Mid-City neighbourhood devastated by Katrina, it’s a symbol of the Big Easy’s rebirth and resiliency a decade after the storm.


Updated: September 1, 2015 04:00 AM