San Francisco, CA
Having reached the heights she has reached, it seems like everything Dianne Reeves touches turns to magic. Her phenomenal musical compatriots—pianist Peter Martin, guitar wiz Romero Lubambo, bassist Reginald Veal and percussionist Terreon Gully—lift and support Reeves in her jazz improvs and stunning wordless vocalizations. “Tango,” influenced by L.A.’s Latin music scene, is a joy to behold, bridging the space between the salsa/bossa grooves and the hip, free-flowing jazz of greats like Simone and McRae.
Reeves offered a few numbers from her latest CD, Beautiful Life: a moody re-interpretation of Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams”; a stunning cover of Bob Marley’s “Waiting in Vain”; and the lovely Marvin Gaye-recorded “I Want You.” Reeves’s husky vocals wrap themselves around a dreamy ballad like “I’m in Love Again” and her heartfelt encore of McCoy Tyner and Sammy Cahn’s “You Taught My Heart to Sing.” “Cold” is a strong female perspective on moving on, very emotional when she intones “I’m so much better now without you.”
Reeves is alive with the spirit of music, sounds and feelings. Like her soul sister Rachelle Ferrell, Reeves’s voice is a valued instrument uniting the heart, mind and essence of humanity. Her adoring fans, myself included, feel the connections she creates. That she has attained great critical success is just icing on the cake.
June 15, 2014