Jazz CD Reviews

Jessica Molaskey – A Kiss to Build a Dream On – Arbors Records

Come for the infectiously joyous vocals; stay for the amazing jazz violin solos.

Published on May 4, 2010

Jessica Molaskey – A Kiss to Build a Dream On – Arbors Records

Jessica Molaskey – A Kiss to Build a Dream On – Arbors Records ARCD 19384, 1:01:14 ****:

Jessica Molaskey is one of those singers who communicates a sense of fun that quickly has your toes tapping and eventually singing along. Her sure sense of rhythm, spot-on intonation, and precise enunciation is married to a warm, airy, and inviting voice. What comes across is a love of life and a desire to bring the audience along with her. She’s a performer in the best sense of that word.

“A Kiss to Build a Dream On” is a family affair, for the most part. Joining Malaskey is her husband, John Pizzarelli, jazz guitarist and vocalist, his father Bucky Pizzarelli on guitar, and his brother Martin Pizzarelli on bass. Rounding out the ensemble is Aaron Weinstein on violin. While listening to the Pizzarellis is always a welcome treat, it was Weinstein that was the surprise. His jazz-inspired solos were so tastefully done and expertly executed that I was frequently blown away. I hope to hear a solo effort soon.

The choice of songs is a bit eclectic, but it was intended to replicate the experience of a typical Pizzarelli/Molaskey family singing night, focusing on personal favorites. Old standards like “Tea for Two” sit side-by-side with Sondheim’s “Everybody Loves Louis.” That little bit of unpredictability adds energy and excitement to the mix. This is first-class jazz vocal fare with virtuoso instrumental accompaniment.

1. Happy Habit
2. You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby / Baby Face
3. Hello Sunshine Hello
4. A Kiss to Build a Dream On
5. Everybody Loves Louis
6. Tea for Two
7. Take Me to You
8. Breezin’ Along With the Breeze
9. Isn’t He Something
10. Hiding in Plain Sight
11. I’m Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover
12. You’re Nobody Till Somebody Loves You
13. Ain’t Misbehavin’
14. Bye Bye Blues
15. Heart’s Desire

– Hermon Joyner

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