Album review

Patricia Barber


Label: Premonition
Media: LP
Genre: Jazz

Patricia Barber enjoys a reputation among music lovers and nightclub habitués as a talented performer and arranger. Yet among audiophiles, her name is more often heard in vain because her records receive too much play time during audio shows and at audio emporiums. Barber is more than a well-recorded female vocalist, however. She is a unique performer of her own compositions and arrangements and has stuck to her ‘critics be damned’ ways. She plays with time signatures to create an edgy vibe without crossing over into avant-garde territory.

This 1999 recording was done for Premonition Records at the time it teamed up with Blue Note for several years, and was originally released under a joint imprint agreement. It has now reverted to Premonition Records, which has turned the master analogue tape mixes, originally recorded by Jim Anderson, over to Doug Sax for mastering. Recorded live at Chicago’s Green Mill jazz club, this is one of the best live jazz recordings ever made, and Sax has done an outstanding job. Barber’s piano and Hammond B-3 playing have never sounded better with amazing dynamics. The 2 LPs are pressed at RTI and presented in a high quality foldout cover—just don’t take it to any audio shows.

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