Meeting over George Gershwin's music is a great way to start a musical friendship. Such is the case in the collaboration of jazz pianist & vocalist Susan Covey and operatic soprano Rebecca Cummings for the new release "When nights were long" CD a fresh approach to traditional Christmas Music.
Susan Covey is a self taught, ear-playing, popular pianist and vocalist with the ability to switch from Deloverly to Debussy in a heartbeat. On an "engagement free" evening she headed out to the local art museum to see some art & hear exerpts from "Porgy and Bess". "The holidays are always so hectic" says Susan Covey "at times you need to just settle down, catch your breath and have something pretty flow into your head".
Rebecca Cummings is a conservatory trained singer with an equally broad range within the opera field, who was singing amidst art, without amplification and able to make "eye contact" with the audience. "From my musical experiences in performing in on stage, church settings and children's theatre - I've learned to let the audience enthusiasm power my own expression."
A conversation ensued and both realized they shared an interest in music being approachable, refreshing easy on the ears and leaving the listener with a little more than they came with.
"When nights were long" is a CD compilation of traditional and folk carols in the original language often with the English version included. The songs flow from piano only to vocal and back, allowing the listener's thoughts have a break from words.
Their other partners in this effort were their recording engineer Alan Beavers of ALBA productions and Dimtry Guskov who did the cover photography. Alan said "Their love of music came right through the board - it was my job to catch the spontaneity as they both came into the project from different directions."
Their improvisation and musical sprightliness give the CD the enjoyable polish for this wondrous season.
Check out the artist's website:
1. Susani - vocal German
2. The Holly and the Ivy - vocal
3. Un Flambeau, Jeanette, Isabelle - vocal French
4. Il est ne, le Devin Enfant - vocal French
5. It came upon the Midnight Clear - piano
6. La Marche des Rois - vocal French
7. O Tannenbaum - vocal German
8. Away in the Manger - piano
9. Silent Night - vocal German
10. All through the Night - piano
11. What Child is this? - piano
12. Joy to the World - piano
13. The First Noel - piano
14. Angels we have heard on High - vocal Cummings
15. O Little town of Bethlehem - vocal Cummings
16. O Holy Night - piano
17. Ave Maria - vocal Latin Cummings
18. Veni, Emmanuel - piano
19. Auld Lang Syne - piano