Dreambox Media

Gina Roche': "Dawning Of a New Way"


CD cover

Singer / songwriter Gina Roche' is the main ingredient in a simmering Brazilian-flavored dish on "Dawning Of a New Way," with an all-star supporting cast providing the spice and seasoning on several originals, two Jobim classics and three standards.

Personnel: Gina Roche' with master guitarist Romero Lumbabo, pianist Jim Ridl, drummer Allison Miller, and bassists Chico Huff or Tim Lekan.
"Dawning Of a New Way" / "Symptoms Of a Greater Love" / "Let Your Dreams Become Reality" / "Summertime" / "The Gift Of We" / "Tenderly" / "Brigas Nunca Mais" / "No More Blues" / "Use Me" / "Samba de Orfeu" / "The Shadow Of Your Smile"

What the critics say:

"Roche' is a swinging singer who uses her soprano voice to traipse lightly over the Latin beat, which is added to most of the songs. She dabbles with scatting as well, splicing vocalese into the beat on several tunes. On one Jobim tune, she adds a bit of authenticity by singing in Portuguese. Roche's straight ballad approach as exhibited on 'The Shadow of Your Smile' is a deviation yet displays her lovely voice with striking clarity.
The songs with the guitar trio are enhanced greatly through the playing of Lubambo. He has the essence of samba in his blood, and his playing sways in loving response to this infectious music. Bassist Huff and drummer Miller are in synch, making the journey to Brazil very enjoyable. Miller's double time rhythm on 'No More Blues' captures the spirit of Rio and the samba schools very nicely... Ridl's solos are moderately percussive, putting oomph behind the already energetic movement of the singer."
- Cadence

"...on the intersection of jazz, soul and Brazilian pop.
...Roche's voice quivers and cracks like a rhythm-and-blues stylist's on ballads. The Philly-area vocalist and Ridl take on 'The Shadow of Your Smile' as an aching love song, and give 'Summertime' a sly reworking. She uses her lower register to kick off a snappy take of the Bill Withers classic 'Use Me.'
...a likable crossover effort."
- Philadelphia Inquirer

"... an individualistic and compelling singer in an understated sort of way...Her timbre, range, depth of meaning and respect for accompanying instrumentalists reflect those of the best-known Brazilian singers like Astrud Gilberto or Dori Caymmi. Indeed, Roché shows her respect for the genre by singing Jobim's Brígas Nunca Maís in Portuguese to the accompaniment of master guitarist Romero Lubambo.
Roché has chosen to split her album into two genres, Lubambo and bassist Chico Huff working with her on the Latin tunes while pianist Jim Ridl and bassist Tim Lekan appear on the standards. Despite the split, the project is unified by Roché's sultry and subtle voice, lowering to its seeming lowest possibilities before rising two octaves in an expression of exhilaration.
Allowing her accompanists to shine, Roché sometimes joins them as yet another instrumentalist as she sings wordlessly before unexpectedly breaking out into words as a fulfillment of the tune. As the feeling of the tunes dictate, Roché improvises in purrs or prods or growls or cries or whispers or clipped words or roundly formed extended tones that invest the songs with emotional content.
The instrumentalists on the album are uniformly excellent, and singling them out would detract from Roché's glowing presence. Yet drummer Allison Miller, lately working with Rachel Z in her tribute to Wayne Shorter and appearing on every track, provides the consistency to the project, varying the rhythm from the rumbling portent of 'Summertime' to the New Orleans street march beat of 'No More Blues.'
Presenting four new compositions with personal importance to Roché, Dawning Of A New Way reveals a heretofore hidden talent who finally has come into her own as a sensitive interpreter of song and a continuation in the long line of singers who have made their sounds extensions of their personalities."
- All About Jazz

"Roche' showcases her warm vocals and considerable range throughout...'Dawning Of a New Way' is an exhilarating debut CD that will provide lasting pleasure..."
- The Press of Atlantic City

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