In the past her breathy alto and impeccable piano phrasing combined to give sensitive renderings of selections from the Great American Songbook; her numerous albums propelled her to superstar status. But she turned her back on all that.
Even though the language is foreign and much of the sound comes from a faraway cotinent, there is also an immediate rush of recognition that among us are those who cannot be stopped, inspired by everything good and real that surrounds us.
What can I say? Fortunately, getting strong doses of doo-wop and gospel music early in life, I immediately gravitated to R&B music. There was something there that instantly reached me; the singing for sure, and the cleverness of the arrangements. Whatever it was, I was hooked at a young age and this music has stayed with me all my life.
Tom Waits continues to growl out amazing material, BoDeans's Sam Llanas steps out on his own to wonderful results, and a classic live performance from Ray Charles is captured in this week's Bentley's Bandstand.