Linda Purl has the kind of face you cannot take your eyes off – and she also has a voice that you can’t help being seduced by either. This recording – Taking a Chance on Love – may be limited to emotions of and about the romance of love and loving. But you will find few albums that explore the emotion and express it with more elegance and conviction than this one. It’s not difficult to understand why.
Miss Purl is first and foremost a superb listener and she listens to these songs and their emotional narratives – however flippant these may be – with requisite attention. The she allows their singular magic to seep into her sensibilities. Magic ensues. When Miss Purl begins to express each of them they become wholly her own – as if they were written for and about no one else but her. That’s as far as the experiential part of this music is concerned. The other part is that Miss Purl is a sublime actor and so she becomes the characters in these songs. Finally there is the shine on each of the songs that makes them glimmer as never before and this has to do with what all this had made her and that is this:
On these songs Miss Purl reveals herself as an artist of the first order. Her instrument is gorgeous; lustrous, precise and feather-light. Her phrasing is immaculate and flawless; her musicianship is fierce as she digs into the expression of each word, brings ceaseless variety to soft dynamics and gives each phrase a very special grace. This is something that you will hear everywhere on the music of this album, but especially on “Throw it Away”, a song that Abbey Lincoln made impossibly her own. Magically, Miss Purl does likewise with her interpretation.
Along the way Miss Purl is accompanied along the way by pianist Tedd Firth, bassist David Finck and drummer Ray Marchica and reeds player Nelson Rangell. Each musician delivers a poignant performance because each of them is perfectly attuned to Miss Purl’s vision and artistry. This is an album to die for…
Track list – 1: Pure Imagination; 2: I Have Dreamed; 3: Lucky Day; 4: And We Will Fly/Come Fly With Me; 5: Taking a Chance on Love; 6: Too Late Now; 7: Throw it Away; 8: Wave; 9: Darn that Dream; 10: You Fascinate Me; 11: Try Your Wings; 12: Lullaby
Personnel – Linda Purl: vocals; Tedd Firth: piano; David Finck: contrabass; Ray Marchica: drums; Nelson Rangell: reeds
Released – 2020
Label – Reaching Records
Runtime – 49:36