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Stepping Out

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Performer Notes
  • Personnel: Diana Krall (vocals, piano); John Clayton (bass); Jeff Hamilton (drums).
  • Recorded at Kingsound, North Hollywood, California and Group IV Studios, Hollywood, California. Includes liner notes by Ray Brown.
  • All tracks have been digitally remastered.
  • STEPPIN' OUT was singer Diana Krall's first released session, recorded in 1992. Jazz singing aside, what most attracts listeners at first are Krall's prodigious piano chops. A former student of legendary pianist Jimmy Rowles, Krall is eager to show her stuff here, making this release as much an instrumentalist's debut as a vocalist's. Unlike just about every other new pianist, Krall doesn't go in for the murky chromatic maelstroms that currently pass for improvisation. She's an unpretentious traditionalist with a big funky sound and splashy dynamics worthy of Erroll Garner and Red Garland. Check out instrumentals "Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea" and "Big Foot" for thoroughly hard swinging of the old school.
  • Of course Diana Krall has since made a name as one of our better jazz singers. The simplicity and taste marking her piano playing also characterize Krall's approach to singing. And the bluesy spare attack she employs leaves plenty of room for the liquid piano accompaniment to fill up. She's also fond of bending a phrase or two, but doesn't overdo it like many neophyte jazz singers. Most of all she sounds honest, a rarity in a young artist performing in such a classic style.
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