Celestial Anomaly - Janis Mann and Kenny Werner w/Hamilton Price, Roy McCurdy, and Joe LaBarbera
Janis Mann's new CD is a collaboration with Kenny Werner, a world-class pianist and composer whose prolific output of compositions, recordings and publications impact audiences around the world. Kenny was a recipient of the 2010 Guggenheim Fellowship Award and is currently an Artist-in-Residence at New York University. He has had many outstanding musical partnerships over the years including Toots Thielemans, Joe Lovano, and Ari Hoenig. Kenny Werner’s influence is unsurpassed. He has impacted an entire generation of musicians and artists.
“Perfection, 360 degrees of soul and science in one human being. My kind of musician.” - Quincy Jones
At once both a striking song stylist and a fearless improviser, Janis Mann is that rare artist who can sweep you away with her captivating sound. She is a true jazz singer in the manner of Carmen McRae, Betty Carter, and Shirley Horn, yet with a sound all her own. An exciting and engaging performer, Mann's rich timbre, flexibility, and range often invite comparisons to Sarah Vaughan. She has worked with Roy Haynes, Kenny Werner, Diane Schuur, Terell Stafford, Dave Frishberg, and many other jazz luminaries, earning praises from each.
"Singer Mann’s rich-toned voice and intimate way with a song affirm her status as one of the Southland’s finest jazz vocal artists." -Don Heckman, The International Review of Music
A native New Yorker, Mann is now a favorite on the Los Angeles jazz scene. She has also drawn raves from audiences and critics in New York with her performances at the Blue Note and the Kitano. Her previous recordings have been national hits on radio, internet, and cable.
The album also features legendary drummers Roy McCurdy and Joe LaBarbera along with one of L.A.'s finest bassists, Hamilton Price. Their masterful playing helps to make this project unique.
Here Kenny talks about working with Janis and the band:
"From the start Janis' project was different from other singers I've worked with. She encouraged our ideas and some totally edgy experimentation. The band played some tunes in what I thought was an innovative and challenging way. Janis is a fantastic singer who stays on course with great strength, style and phrasing. She held the pitch and intention of the song like a rock and humanized the music to where it has to be to be worthy of listening to.
We played in such a way as the music I like to be associated with. There are some unique things on there, too. Like an almost atonal version of "You Must Believe In Spring."
I like to put out music that's unique in some way. Music that I think is unusually deep and artistic. We got into some special stuff and Janis sounded great.
I am very proud of this project. I found myself as proud of my contributions on this CD as I am of my own CDs. My work with singers doesn't usually express me, but this one does. Bravo Janis!
We played in such a way as the music I like to be associated with. Janis is a fantastic singer who stays on course with great strength, style and phrasing. I like to put out music that's unique in some way. Music that I think is unusually deep and artistic.We got into some special stuff and Janis sounded great.
I am very proud of this project. I found myself as proud of my contributions on this CD as I am of my own CDs. My work with singers doesn't usually express me, but this one does."
Janis describes her thoughts regarding this collaboration:
"Being in the moment, letting go, and allowing the joy and the creativity to come through is what I live for. That's what this project is about. We went into the studio with a clean canvas -- no rehearsals, no arrangements. Just some great compositions on which to paint. It was a full collaboration.
It's been three years since Kenny and I started working together. We first met right before a weekend engagement in NYC. There was a strong musical connection from the very beginning. Kenny said it felt like we had been playing together for years.
To step onto a stage or into a studio with Kenny, being completely spontaneous, and to create music and have such amazing magic happen is really hard to put into words.
Music is a very healing source. It brings so many people together. I have always felt, from early on, that it is my calling. I am so thrilled to be able to share this very special project with you. "