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Scott Hamilton and Karin Krog

The Best Things In Life

STUNT STUCD15192 [51:58]




The Best Things In Life Are Free

I Must Have That Man

Will You Still Be Mine

How Am I To Know

Donít Gert Scared

Ainít Nobodyís Business

We Will Be Together Again

Sometimes Iím Happy

What A Little Moonlight Can Do

Shake It, But Donít Break It
Scott Hamilton (tenor saxophone): Karin Krog (vocal): Jan Lundgren (piano): Hans Backenroth (bass): Kristian Leth (drums)
Recorded Copenhagen, July 2015


This was recorded back in July 2015 and teams the great vocalist Karin Krog with the ever-articulate Scott Hamilton and a front-rank rhythm section led by Jan Lundgren, whose own playing over the last few years have seen him join the topmost echelon of great players anywhere Ė not just Europe.

Itís not indelicate, merely a statement of fact, to note that Karin Krog was around 78 when she recorded the set, so now has to husband her vocal resources more obviously than in previous years, as can be heard in The Best Things in Life Are Free. No such observations extend to her sidemen, where one can hear Lindgren in particular take an especially crisp, dashing solo.

Hamilton leads off I Must Have That Man, where one finds Krog coiling and twisting the lyrics enjoying assonances and very slightly hinting at Billie Holiday. Krog occasionally sits out, so Will You Still Be Mine is a quartet performance, showing the bandís fluent and fluid playing and neat trades. Further variation comes in a duo performance Ė voice and piano Ė of How Am I To Know, where Lundgrenís deft and supportive chords and harmonies bring colour and great sensitivity to an already fine vocal reading.

The Getz-Gullin-Hendricks vocalise (the vocalise was obviously Hendricksí) of Donít Get Scared is still pretty hip Ė at least it is in this reprise Ė and itís never a hardship to hear Richard Rodney Bennettís arrangement of that old time standard, Ainít Nobodyís Business which, as it should, maintains its slow blues status. Itís Hamilton pretty much all the way Ė Krog sits out Ė on We Will Be Together Again, his thoughtful ballad playing bringing renewed and welcome variety. Bassist Hans Backenroth dons his Slam Stewart vocal hat for Sometimes Iím Happy but What a Little Moonlight Can Do is even better. This is a number very much associated with Billie Holiday but itís taken in its own way here Ė as an up-tempo swinger with fine obbligato tenor and contained but still sassy vocal. Kristian Lethís drumming, as throughout, is crisp. Erroll Garnerís Shake It, But Donít Break It ends the programme with just the quartet. Joie de vivre, and even a funky phrase or two, ensures that there is no autumnal close. Thereís plenty of wit and charm in this spirited album.

Jonathan Woolf

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