Lynda D’Amour is one of Boston-area’s most exciting, sought-after cabaret singers, and her debut recording, "Ordinary Fool," shows exactly why, with her buttery alto, crisp attention to lyrics, and a no-nonsense interpretive style that tells it like it is. This is a CD you will want to keep handy whether for a romantic evening, or your own private pity party, as D’Amour takes you on the all-too familiar journey of love’s fables and foibles.
Here D’Amour lives up to her name, offering many sides of love in her signature eclectic mix of songs, that maintains its cohesion through her own musical sensibility, Jim Rice’s inventive arrangements, and a carefully crafted arc that belies the use of shuffle mode. Mixed in with some well known standards, such as "Someone In Love" (Jimmy Van Heusen/Johnny Burke), and "I Got Lost In His Arms" (Irving Berlin), given refreshing uptempo deliveries, she offers some delightful surprises as the Looking Glass 1972 pop hit, "Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl)" sung slow, making this barmaid’s tale of unrequited love all the more wistful, and Stevie Wonder’s 1985 hit tune, "Overjoyed," showing the sunnier side of love, brimming with delight.
A born belter, D’Amour explores the beauty of holding back, such as in "Blackberry Winter" (A. Wilder/L. McGohon), where her lilting vibrato tearfully renders such tender lines as "When you think of all the love that you wasted on someone that you never really had," using exquisite phrasing to underscore its meaning. But it is in the title song, a rarely heard gem, and her closing number, "What Kind of Fool Am I," D’Amour fairly whispers, revealing the fragile vulnerability under her outer armor, until she finally resolves with her glorious belt to pick herself up, and us with her, and it is worth the wait. -John Amodeo for Edgeboston.com
John Amodeo is a free lance writer living in the Boston streetcar suburb of Dorchester with his husband of 20 years. He has covered cabaret for Bay Windows and Theatermania.com, and is the Boston correspondent for Cabaret Scenes Magazine.