I’ve been listening to the CD Worrisome Heart by Melody Gardot. She writes her songs, sings, and plays the guitar. She’s a jazz vocalist with pop and blues mixed in. Worrisome Heart was her first full-length album. It was done after a horrible accident when she was hit on her bike by a motorist who ran a red light. She spent a year in a hospital bed, most of it on her back, so she learned to play the guitar on her back. She also only started writing music after the accident. The Wikipedia entry about Melody gives a good account of how her injuries affected her music.
I strongly recommend Worrisome Heart.
A new CD in the same genre is Way Down Low by Kat Edmonson. Again, I recommend the CD, especially the first cut, Lucky. Like Gardot, Edmonson writes many of the songs she sings.
Both CDs are quiet, introspective, with wonderful instrumentation. They are easy to listen to but are not “easy listening”.
Why does it seem like there are so many good, female jazz vocalists, but relatively few male jazz vocalists? Has it always been that way? Is vocal jazz more suited to the female voice? I have no answers because I’ve just started to think about these questions. Does anyone has any insights? Maybe I’m completely wrong.