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Sophie Milman -- anyone heard of her?

Discussion in 'Recordings [DB]' started by Aaron Saunders, Sep 24, 2005.

  1. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    I'm going to see a concert tomorrow night -- the Dave Barton Quartet (who I thought was the headliner and am dying to see) is apparently opening for Sophie Milman.

    I looked her up on Google, and from the sound samples, she's got a great voice, personality, and awesome band. We're not talking Sarah Vaughn here, but very good. Really neat sound sample on her site for "I Can't Give You Anything But Love."

    I'll come back to this thread with a report on the show, but I was curious to hear any opinions y'all might have on her recordings.
  2. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Alrighty guys...here's the scoop:

    Wonderful voice, even better stage presence. GREAT band -- from what I understand, all McGill graduates. It was a piano/bass/drums/reeds (s/t sax, flute) setup. Rob Faye (sp?), the bassist, was using a 120 year old Tyrolean (!) DB with Helicore strings and Fishman Full Circle through an Acoustic Image Contra. We spoke while he was setting up and he let me play it after the show -- great guy, awesome player.

    Honestly, I cannot reccomend this group enough. They make for a really great show. Also, as an unrelated side bar, Sophie Milman is one of the arrestingly beautiful women I've seen in my entire life. Lucky band.

    The only downside is that the live band is not the same as the one that plays on her CD. IMO, the live band was significantly better.
  4. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    Rob Fahie's a great bassist and yes that's a nice bass he has. As for Sophie well what can I say? Very polished, very sexy, but it's all way too packaged and commercial for me. She always surrounds herself with good musicians which is great but there's not really enough substance there for me. And yes she's a looker but she's just a girl - that ain't no woman!

    If you really want to hear a current vocalist that's a musician, listen to Tierney Sutton.
  5. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Fahie! That's it. I felt bad for not remembering how to spell it, I swear I asked him about 3 times. Great guy.

    For modern female jazz vocalists, to be entirely honest, I don't think you're going to find a single one that isn't amongst the packaged/commercial crowd except maybe Patricia Barber.

    On the lack of substance crowd -- I'll again say this. You're not going to find many who aren't like this. They're all so young. The only modern female jazz vocalists I can think of that has substance, and can certainly be called "women" and not girls are Patricia Barber and Diana Krall.

    Not only does Sophie have a great voice and is a natural performer, but from every indicator, she very much loves what she does. To have substance as a musician, you have to have really lived a lot in your life, ne? Considering she's only...what, 22, I'd say she's doing pretty well. Give her a few more years to live, and she'll be very much a woman and jazz singer with a great deal of substance.

    That said, I'd say it's slightly absurd to say she's not a musician...can't imagine too many non-musicians are at UoT for their graduate work. I will most certainly look up this Tierny Sutton though!

    Marc -- I agree on the Krall thing...and I'm a big fan of her voice and performances.

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    I agree! There aren't a whole lot of vocalists that really impress me, but Tierney Sutton is definitely an exception. Definitely more than just a "singer".
  7. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Kitty Margolis.
  8. Ben Rose

    Ben Rose

    Jan 12, 2004
    I agree with the Adrians on Tierney Sutton. She's definitely not just another pretty face/voice.
  9. I played with Tierney 2 years ago at the Lima Jazz Festival. She is a real pro. She had some intricate melodies in her rep with high difficulty levels, and she made it seem easy, like she was playing with it. What a talent. And a real lady. Now to shift from second to third. If many girls weren't sexy, they'd have little going for themselves. It's their fault. Many don't take the art seriously and suffer for it. Several of the great female vocalists were lookers in their time, but establishing themselves on the bandstand as musicians and not just vocalists/chick singers meant that they would be respected, and usually all were. Tierney's kinda easy on the eye, too.

  10. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    Yes absolutely. Kitty was the next vocalist I was going to mention. She's got chops for sure. The only thing that I don't like is that she has a real twang to her pronunciation but then again, that's just part of her sound. Listen to her say "LLLLLLiPS" on "Midnight Sun" on the "evolution" album. It's pretty funny but she's a great singer for sure.
  11. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    a) Try calling Cassandra Wilson "girl" and see what happens!

    b) How 'bout Luciana Souza to pick another one of many possible names?

    c) Singers have it tough that way. If they look good people tend to focus on the looks. If they don't look good chances are we never hear about them. Good thing people don't apply the same double standard to double bassists.
  12. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    I played with Kitty earlier this year.....she told me that she started out as a country/bluegrass singer. So I guess there's a little bit of the twang thang left over.

    Tierney's been here a couple of times on some jazz fests that I did, and she always sounds great. Nice person.
  13. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    Check out:

    Jackie Allen (including her great bass and vocal duo album with Hans Sturm)

    Sunny Wilkinson

    Just to name two and there are just so many more who are truly the equal of any musicians in their band and not just a pretty voice and/or a pretty face, and can genuinely sing about the experiences of life.

    I was wrong to call Sophie "a girl." She's a young woman and she is a fine singer. It's just that for me, I don't find a lot of the younger vocalists all that believable. Have you ever heard a 22 year old sing "Lush Life" and carry it off?

    I just think there's so much more to the spectrum of vocalists than the well-known names.
  14. Steve Clark

    Steve Clark

    Jan 9, 2004
    London ON
    Thanks for this thread. Definitley some folks to check out.
  15. jahan


    Dec 12, 2004
    Alameda, California
    I recommend to anyone into Brazilian music, and even those not, Leny Adrade. Great command as a bandleader and singer. This woman grooves!
  16. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Adrian - I caught some Tierney Sutton on JazzFM while in Toronto the other day (touring the Humber College music campus ;)) and I gotta say -- very nice.
  17. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    Tierney's intonation (amongst other things) is amazing.