Dee Dee Bridgewater has gone back to her beginning…Memphis, TN. Born in the city known for its pivotal part in American culture, music and civil rights struggle, Bridgewater was part of an American legacy. After moving to Flint, Michigan, Bridgewater s childhood nights were spent tuning into Memphis WDIA, the first radio station in the nation featuring all-black programming. It was also the station where her father spun vinyl as the on-air disc jockey, Matt the Platter Cat. This album is not only a return to Bridgewater s roots, but it offers ground-breaking re-imagining of American Blues and R&B classics with backing by the Stax Academy Choir, Kirk Whalum and recorded at Willie Mitchell s world-renowned Royal Studios.
When Detroiter David Usher and Dizzy Gillespie founded the Dee Gee record label, they might have had an inkling that their project could, and would, fail financially due to poor distribution, the conversion from 78s to LPs, and the heavy hammer of the taxman. They might have felt, but could not have imagined, that they would create some of the most essential and pivotal jazz recordings for all time, not to mention some of the last great sides of the pioneering bebop era. Gillespie's large ensembles brought to public attention the fledgling young alto and tenor saxophonist John Coltrane, such Detroiters as guitarist Kenny Burrell or pianist/vibraphonist Milt Jackson, and vocalists Joe Carroll, Freddy Strong and Melvin Moore. Considering the years – 1951 and 1952 – this was revolutionary breakthrough music from a technical and entertainment aspect, delightful music that has stood the test of time and displays the trumpeter in his prime as a bandleader.
Dee Dee Bridgewater's move to France awhile back has resulted in her having a relatively low profile in jazz. This excellent live set should help restore her reputation. Whether it be a three-song Horace Silver medley, the warhorse "All of Me," Jobim's "How Insensitive," "Night in Tunisia" or the rarely performed "Strange Fruit," Bridgewater (who is backed by a French rhythm section) is in top form, singing with swing and sensitivity.
As the grandson of the late trumpeter Doc Cheatham, and former student of legendary jazz trumpeter Donald Byrd, trumpeter Theo Croker is an artist steeped in jazz tradition. Well-versed in the swing, bop, and modal styles of acoustic jazz, Croker's own music reveals a love of organic funk, soul, and gooey, groove-oriented hip-hop. It's a vital amalgam that would have pleased the forward-thinking Byrd, whose own '70s funk-jazz albums are an obvious touchstone for Croker on his hypnotically enlightened 2016 effort Escape Velocity.
‘Dee Dee’s Feathers’ is the first collaboration of three-time Grammy Award winning jazz singer-songwriter Dee Dee Bridgewater, the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra’s (NOJO) and its Artistic Director and jazz trumpeter Irvin Mayfield. The album, the first new music by Dee Dee Bridgewater since 2010, will be available in Europe and Asia on April 20th, 2015. Dee Dee’s Feathers gives a modern vision of New Orleans, painted through traditional songs such as Big Chief, Saint James Infirmary, and What a Wonderful World along with new compositions Congo Square and C’est Ici Que Je T’aime, which will transport people through the newly constructed home of Dee Dee Bridgewater in the historic neighborhood of the Tremé.
Dee Dee Bridgewater (born May 27, 1950) is an American jazz singer. She is a three-time Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter, as well as a Tony Award - winning stage actress and host of National Public Radio's syndicated radio show JazzSet with Dee Dee Bridgewater.