Your Songs By Harry Connick, Jr.
It’s a surprise that Harry Connick Jr, one of the world’s foremost modern jazz singers, has produced such a remarkably flat and passionless 25th studio album. “Your Songs,” his latest release, is a collection of songs that you’ll probably know and love mostly because of their original versions. But all Connick Jr’s renditions are likely to do is make you appreciate the way the song was first sung - by someone else.
While his version of Billy Joel’s “Just The Way You Are” has a soothing sound to it, the vocals lack the love and devotion that the song is about making it a background melody instead of a touching ballad.
Connick Jr tackles Elvis’s “Can’t Help Falling In Love With You” with a bit more relish, oozing more of the charm that you’d expect from a jazz singer. The brass sound that Connick Jr combines with his piano music here is an interesting change from the strings sound that Presley’s original version holds.
Other fairly enjoyable tracks are “The Way You Look Tonight” and “First Time Ever I Saw Your Face,” both of which are songs smooth and subtle enough to suit Connick Jr’s laid-back vocals.
But on the other hand “Besame Mucho (Kiss Me Much)” and “Your Song” are sung weakly and once again lack the power with which the lyrics should be imbued, though the sauntering piano sound on “Your Song” is still entirely pleasant to listen to regardless.
Overall, you’d get more fun out of new music from other jazz artists such as Diana Krall and her latest CD, or even our of Connick Jr’s earlier work if you’re a devoted fan. But an album full of blandly done love songs that everyone’s heard ad nauseum does not necessitate buying, or even listening to for that matter.
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