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Lyn Stanley has been awarded Female Jazz Vocalist of The Year 2018 from one of the most visible public radio stations in the USA, KKJz-Los Angeles who have the highest Nielsen ratings for jazz radio audiences in the U.S.
Mr. Levine notes that Ms. Stanley's recordings "are a revival of some of the greatest hits ever produced for Broadway Shows and Hollywood movies. They are chestnuts deserving to be reintroduced to the America public. The great American Songbook lives again with the added benefit of 'State Of The Art' recording techniques thanks to Lyn Stanley."
Part two of jazz recording artist Lyn Stanley's Julie London tirbute project is a very rare Direct to Disc Live album with LA's top Jazz players who named themselves the Jazz Mavericks. Featuring Otmaro Ruiz (piano), Mike Lang (piano), Chuck Berghofer (bass), Aaron Serfaty (drums), John Chiodini (guitar) and Luis Conte (percussion), the Jazz Mavericks created arrangements for incredibly creative music plus over the top sound from the best engineers in LA.
While both Lyn and London could be described as sultry and sophisticated singers, the album is an appreciation, not an imitation of Londons material selections. Stanley puts her own distinctive stamp on the material London performed and has decided to include some of Julie Londons husbands works as well as pop songs that set a lively pace to a live album. Songs include: Route 66, written by Julie Londons second husband, Bobby Troup, Let There Be Love, Body and Soul, Pink Cadillac, You Never Can Tell, Lover Man, Bye Bye Blackbird and many more.
In addition to acclaim for her velvety alto, choice of material, and her unique and personal approach to songs, Stanleys attention to detail in the studio has garnered raves. This recording utilizes the best possible lathe in Los Angeles, tracked at Bernie Grundman Mastering studio in Hollywood. The ever so fastidious mastering guru, Bernie Grundman, commandeered the coveted Grundman studio lathe. In addition, Bernies long time associate and fellow audiophile, world famous multi-Grammy winning engineer, Allen Sides ensured the highest quality sound and mixing. Allen has engineered over 1,000 records with major studio artists selling over one billion records, including Joni Mitchell's Both Sides Now. Allen was also supported by Capitol Studios top engineer, Steve Genewick.
Lyn can be counted on to surround herself in the studio with the crème de la crème of musicians. For this venture, she aims for the intimate sound of piano, bass, drums/percussion, and guitar. Lyn has engaged Arturo Sandovals long time extraordinary pianist, Otmaro Ruiz, along with her previous collaborators including legendary studio jazz pianist Mike Lang, Wrecking Crew and Frank Sinatras bassist Chuck Berghofer, plus featured guitarist John Chiodini (Peggy Lee and Natalie Cole), percussionist Luis Conte (James Taylor touring artist) and award winning Latin percussionist/drummer, Aaron Serfaty.
While speaking of the album Lyn says, "You have to be into the musical moment. There's pressure on everyone - me, the musicians - we have to be totally prepared. But it's a great format if we execute it well. I plan to let the real experience of a 'live' recording happen, even the countdowns, so my fans can feel like they are live with us in the studio 'lounge.'"
...[this Direct To Disc] is SPECTACULAR yes, Breathtaking!...the sound...is simply PERFECT!"This direct to disc is absolutely exceptional! If I did not know that I was listening to a vinyl record, I would say it must be a copy of a master tape. That's how good it is. It is a reference record - for me it is THE reference record. Unbelievable." - Otto, a fan from Germany
"The unique and adventurous nature of this album is perhaps a bigger story than the exquisite music. This is recorded live in the studio as a direct-to-disc album with instantaneous mixing and no editing. This process bypasses magnetic tape, recording directly onto an analog disc. The sound quality is impeccable, as would be the case for Stanley's penchant for audiophile pristine production. The process requires nerves of steel, no flubs allowed. There is no opportunity to 'fix' mistakes later. Not many of these are made in the modern era and Stanley has become just one of five singers who have created a direct-to-disc vocal album containing at least three songs and over 12 minutes of music. She would have to have world class musicians to pull this off. There is no stopping except for a few precious seconds between songs. Another challenge is adjusting to the shifting moods of the tunes in the three- to five-second separations between songs. On just one album side, Lyn Stanley's interpretations run the emotional gamut from the easy swing of 'Route 66,' through rollicking 'Pink Cadillac,' to the heartfelt 'Lover Man'. But despite the pressure-cooker situation, Stanley and The Jazz Mavericks shift through all the feelings, including 'You Never Can Tell,' seemingly effortlessly, delivering a dozen tunes with a relaxed, creative, swinging sound. Lyn Stanley is fearless and continues to push the envelope." - Jim Hynes, www.makingascene.org
"Talk about taking unplugged to a new level of the game... Stanley revisits a bunch of the Julie London tunes she recorded on her tip of the cap to London, but she cuts them all over again, live direct to disc in a session that crackles like it was in front of a live, appreciative audience. There's a few curve balls in the song stack so that you don't feel like you are buying the same album twice but over all, this top jazz vocalist could have you buying the same album twice without you registering a complaint. The first time was solid and this one matches it and goes even farther. This really is a true artist cruising along at the top of her game. Hot stuff." - Midwest Record (midwestrecord.com)
"...You can hear the comfort level in each tune from everyone involved. Listen to how Lyn and the team launch into the up-tempo 'Goody Goody' (she got my wife up and dancing to it) and how she/they hold the groove (through) out the song. Or how her voice slowly caresses 'Blue Moon', wringing every last ounce of emotion from that beautiful standard. And after hearing Lyn's sultry, evocative version of 'Route 66' you'll wonder why Julie herself never recorded this tune. Lyn's version will have you longing to make the trip yourself as she conjures up the romance and excitement of that very special road trip. It's a testament to the talent of both Ms. Stanley and her band that they can move so quickly between moods and tempos while recording live to disk and not lose any sense of feeling and/or momentum.
Sonically, you won't hear better. I own a number of the old Sheffield Labs Direct-To-Disk efforts, and while all offer sound to die for, musically they all seem just a bit stifled, as if the musicians were just a little bit tentative in their playing/singing, due no doubt to the type of recording they were doing that was so far outside what they were used to. But here, whether it is due to the caliber of musician used, or the fact that this is in effect a Lyn Stanley working group, or the rehearsal time spent practicing, or combination of all of the above, there is a sense of ease, of comfort, of just laying back and playing, that eludes those earlier efforts. If not for the directness and clarity of the sound, you'd be hard pressed to distinguish this album from any normal studio recording, so smoothly does the group play. As an example, I was especially taken with the sound of Chuck Berghofer's bass. Never before, outside of hearing one live, have I heard that sense of fingers plucking strings, and those strings vibration echoing into and out of the large wood body of the acoustic bass. They come across as two distinct sounds, just as they would live (and so seldom do on tape). There is also an honest sense of real acoustic space around each instrument that seems to get lost when recording to tape. And Lyn's vocals are top-flight. Her voice is front and center, three dimensional and fully formed, and carries that sense of been there/done that comes from someone who feels totally comfortable with each song she's chosen.
I've gotten used to each Lyn Stanley album that crosses my threshold as sounding better than the one before it, and her vocals continuing to climb the ladder in the sense of being able to get inside each song and bring out the essence she wants to share. But with 'London With A Twist' she has succeeded in crafting an album that brings it all to the table. I can't call it perfection, because nothing is perfect, but damn it's close...This album comes with my absolute highest recommendation." - John Maurice Crossettlii, Aural Musings, July 20, 2019, Music 4.5/5, Sound 5/5
"These two sets of 45rpm vinyl records are very good. My so-called very good is not exaggeration, or some outstanding sound effects that the audio fans want, but very clear and very natural and very real recording, and the sound quality is very good." - Liu Hansheng, www.audionet.com/tw
"London With a Twist isn't just a reference LP for audiophiles, something I'd bring along to high-end audio shows back when I was an exhibitor and wanted to wow the attendees. (Although I'd totally do that.) This is almost as pure as it gets for audiophiles like me, unless you have access to the master tapes... This recording sounds as stupendous as it, er, sounds, with a very warm and natural balance and tons of air around the performers. You hear that live, realistic presentation all through the performance, which carries over into the space between the songs when you hear the shuffling of sheet music and the muffled sounds of people getting ready to start the next track. As for the quality of the LP pressing of London With a Twist, wow. Just wow. You know you're listening to a great pressing when the dead wax is almost completely silent. When each side runs out, you hear only the slightest bump. That's not as important as the actual music, of course. But it does tell you how low the noise floor is, and how much music is going to make it to your ears. I do have a tip for people who have purchased this LPgive it a good wash before you play it for the first time, something you should do anyway. I noticed some red curly-cue vinyl shavings in the grooves. It wasn't a big dealin fact, it gave me the feeling that this was fresh out of the oven, so to speak. I do own quite a few direct-to-disc LPs, and the vast majority of them sound quite spectacular. It's a great recording approach that should never die, despite the difficulty in pulling it off successfully. Lyn Stanley, Allen Sides and Bernie Grundman, along with everyone else involved, took a big risk with London With a Twist, but it paid off. It sounds exquisite and as real as Lyn Stanley sitting next to you, providing you with her illuminating commentary as you listen. Highly recommended." - Marc Phillips, Part-Time Audiophile, July 2019 Read more!
"Like Frank Sinatra, Stanley sings songs also assimilated by jazz, but the way she treats them is very different from bona fide jazz singers like Billie Holiday, Betty Carter or Cassandra Wilson. Stanley escues scat singing and vocalese. That is not her wheelhouse. Stanley's metier is melody. In the same way guitarist Jeff Beck only uses only electronically unadorned his technique and knowledge of the guitar to play, Stanley uses her experience and deep melodic appreciation to craft her art, honestly. That established, Stanley's recording London CallingA Toast to Julie London (A.T. Music LLC, 2018) was a marriage between a finely conceived project focusing on the music of Julie London with Stanley's keen interest in audio fidelity. She has become notable not only for her refined vocals but her attention to sonic detail. With her companion disc to the London recording, Lyn Stanley's Favorite Takes: London With a TwistLive at Bernie's, the singer pushes the creative envelope backward into analog recording, highlighting all of the advantages and disadvantages of this recording method. London With a Twist is notable for having been recorded live, direct to disc. What begs explanation here is how did Stanley and her band prepare for their performances. They crashed the studio and banged out their arrangements during rehearsals before the recording in real time. What is guaranteed is the honest authenticity of straight arrangements conceived on the fly. None of the songs presented on the recording are a mystery, but it is in the arrangements where the 'new and novel' is introduced. Time constraints molded a conservative approach to the arranging, allowing for all ears to be on Stanley. The result is a collection of performances that are so immediate one can almost experience being there. So potent is this effect, the lyrics, 'What lies before me / A future that's stormy / A winter that's gray and cold...' become oh so real.
Stanley makes no effort to imitate Julie London. Rather, she celebrates her creative spirit with a creative spirit of her own. Stanley covers Bruce Springsteen's 'Pink Cadillac' and Chuck Berry's 'You Never Can Tell' in the same way that London covered the pop songs of her day ('Stone Soul Picnic,' 'Light My Fire'). She reprises material from the previous London Calling, presenting that material freshly. Stanley's voice is seasoned and well-balanced from low to high registers. She is playful, mirthful, humorous, plaintive and brooding...all at once. Like a great artist is expected to be. While London with a Twist may or may not not be Stanley's best recording to date, it is her most fully realized, conceptually, sonically, artistically." - C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz
"Lyn Stanley, named Female Jazz Vocalist of the Year for 2018 by radio programmer Saul Levine of KKJZ-88.1 FM, was at the [2019 California Audio] show talking to people about her appreciation for the audiophile community and playing cuts from her new Direct-to-Disc album, London With A Twist: Live At Bernies. I've spent some time with this album, and I think it's her best yet. This is simply fantastic music and not just fantastic audiophile music. By the way, if the LP is too rich for your blood, the hybrid SACD also sounds great." - www.theaudiobeatnik.com
"When it comes to ultra-hip solidly swinging jazz vocals, Ms. Stanley has no equal swingin' & rockin' songs like 'Pink Cadillac' will have you tappin' your toes & finger-poppin' right along with the group I predict this one will be getting some MAJOR spins on jazz stations all across the globe. The tune that impressed me most strongly of the dozen offered up is 'Body And Soul' lush & mellow, you'll easily picture yourself in that smoky late-night jazz club as you listen to this one! I give Lyn & all her players a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED rating, with an 'EQ' (energy quotient) score of 4.99." - Dick Metcalf, Editor, Contemporary Fusion Reviews
"Songs originally done by a range of artists from Cole Porter to Bruce Springsteen, take on a different vibe with Stanley's sultry voice giving them life. Two songs not to miss on the album are 'Pink Cadillac' and 'In the Still of the Night.' The 1984 unofficial B-side to 'Born in the USA,' Springsteen's 'Pink Cadillac' has the early days of rock 'n' roll feel that made it an instant classic. In Stanley's version, her sultry voice stops just short of being steely. The song begins with what almost sounds like a Latin rhythm, but it quickly morphs into a bluesy, kind of Louisiana rhythm-based song. The piano sways in rollicking chords, drums thump out a complementary beat. Stanley' phrasing and inflections make the song's lyrics clear. The song becomes fun and upbeat in the hands of Stanley and company.Her voice and phrasing and the stellar soundscape created by the skilled musicians she plays with make songs that people have found exciting for decades will allow audiences to re-think them, and perhaps find a new appreciation for them. [On 'In the Still of the Night'] An energized bass begins running the rhythm section. The piano, guitar and drums play quick and light notes at the same time that the bass continues its groove. The piano and guitar work at almost the mid-point of the song is a nice touch for the song's texture. The big drum finish sounds like a celebration. This is the last song on the recording, so there is kind of a sense of triumph. Throughout, Stanley's voice is gentle, romantic. She blends in with the vibrant cheer of the soundscape, but not in a way that drowns her out. Stanley is cool and calm as she brings the romantic classic to life. With a little swing and a lot of heart, she makes it clear that the songs shes chosen mean a great deal to her." - Dodie Miller-Gould, LemonWire
"The result [of this direct to disc] is SPECTACULAR, yes, breathtaking. Unbelieving one listens to the offered naturalness, shimmering verve, and the ultimate 'live' dynamics. The sound appears like velvet and silk; without all edges and lace, exemplary transparent and SIMPLY PERFECT. In addition, Ms. Stanley is at her best." - Matthias Bode, Stereo Magazine (Germany)
Lyn Stanley London With A Twist - Live At Bernie's - The Challenge LP 180g 45rpm LP
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- Autographed Numbered, Limited Edition - 2000 Copies
- Direct To Disc Vinyl
- 45rpm 180g Vinyl
- Double LP
- Disc Mastering by Bernie Grundman
- Recording & Mixing Engineer: Allen Sides
- Pressed At Pallas in Germany