She has a French father and a Dominican mother so it is no surprise really that singer Cyrille Aimée‘s songs include some Gypsy Jazz as well as hints of World Music and Latin. Her child-like voice and instant joy she conveys is evident once more on her new album “It’s A Good Day”.
She sometimes reminds me of Kat Edmonson who also has a similar, angel-like voice and who also writes her own material. Aimée includes some standards here, like “Love Me Or Leave Me”, “Caravan”, or the album opener, Rodgers & Hart‘s “Where Or When”, but she doesn’t wave the flag of the pure traditionalist, but she injects those tunes with little ideas that make them sound fresh and new again. This is achieved by her piano-less band which consists of the two guitarists Michael Valeanu and Adrien Moignard, and the addition of another guitarist, Guilherme Monteiro, on eight of the thirteen tracks. Bassist Sam Anning (who has his own irresistible “Bamboo Shoots” on the record) and drummer Rajiv Jayaweera round out the band.
This is a very diverting album which makes a lot of fun. Her own songs, particularly the compelling “One Way Ticket”, but also the swinging “Twenty-Eight” (also on her first album from 2009) and “Nuit Blanche”, which she sings in French and can also be found on the “Live at Birdland” album from last year, are especially rewarding.
And the fact that she sings both Peggy Lee and Michael Jackson on her new record only adds to the attraction. I haven’t heard “Off The Wall” in a similar context before – it works amazingly well. And Peggy Lee’s “It’s A Good Day” really is the motto for this album.
Cyrille is back at Birdland this week (Tuesday to Saturday).