“Doubtlessly, you've heard these sorrow and gospel songs hundreds of times, but Ange Smith and Don Mayberry give them fresh luster and integrity. Most compelling are the arrangements that provide each tune with a singular expression. And Smith and Mayberry share such a tonal unity and rhythmic feel that it is pointless to talk about them as a duo. Particularly wonderful is Mayberry's seamless shifts from arco to pizzicato that folds warmly around Smith's always beguiling resonance.
Through all the tunes there is a recurring theme of freedom which has an ever optimistic and hopeful outlook. In short, Smith and Mayberry offer us yet another melodious way to understand the African spiritual odyssey, an odyssey that in their
hands is at once orchestral and triumphant”
Herb Boyd, Author of “Down the Glory Road” and “Brotherman”
“No matter how one feels about the message, the soul of this music and the commitment of the muscians shines through clearly. In this day and age of cheap sentiments and mindless prattle this heart-felt disc is worth investigating” Richard B. Kamins, Cadence
“ It is particularly striking how Smith and Mayberry have managed to find a new way of working through this material. When I listened to “Didn’t It Rain”, I could not help but think of Mahalia Jackson’s famous rendering of this spiritual. This is not in any way an imitation. It is a new perspective on a great tradition, a new gospel for our own time, done by two sophisticated musicians. This is stirring music” Piotar Michalowski, Michigan Jazz
“Together they are as powerful as the sun, gentle as the rain, and as immediate as a sound bite in this technological age” Michael Nastos, Ann Arbor News
“Ange Smith and Don Mayberry bring their prodigious talents to bear on these simple, yet resonant songs and the result is music of haunting beauty and almost mystic simplicity” J. Luchter, Detroit Jazz Monthly
“I love it !” Jim Dulzo, Montreux Jazz Festival
..“Mayberry is the best storyteller only he uses the bass to tell the story” Observer and Eccentric Newspapers
Ange Smith (Vocals) is a versatile singer whose vocal talents range from opera to jazz to gospel. She has appeared at most of Detroit’s jazz venues, the Michigan Opera Theater, and as understudy for the road company of “Ain’t Misbehavin”. She has produced and performed in three one-woman shows, the most recent being a salute to Ethel Waters.
Don Mayberry (Music Director and Bass) is well-known to jazz fans both locally and nationally. He has played most of the European music festivals and is a fixture at the Montreux-Detroit Jazz Festival. He is house bassist for the Fox Theater and has toured recently with Michael Finestein, Frank Sinatra Jr., Johnny Mathis, and Aretha Franklin. He has also recently been featured as the leader on the CD “Kaleidoscope”.