“Love’s Tango” by vocalist June Bisantz and pianist Alex Nakhimovsky have been playing together since 2005. The pair wrote all the songs on this year’s recording that was made available to the public Jan. 18. The gentle Latin rhythms are expounded upon with Bisantz’s vocal stylings and Nakhimovsky’s emotive piano work.
“Love’s Tango” is the follow-up album to 2012’s “It’s Always You,” in which Bisantz explored the works of Chet Baker, including obscure ones. After exploring the entirety of Baker’s career, Bisantz was ready to create original music, and teamed up with Nakhimovsky for that purpose.
About June Bisantz
Even before knowing that Bisantz has a background in visual arts, audiences can hear the color of the songs she sings. In addition to color, there is also texture. Bisantz is Professor Emeritus of Art and Design at Eastern Connecticut University State University. Her visual art has been exhibited in museums, galleries and other public spaces throughout the United States.
In regard to music, Bisantz has co-written and produced several collection of original vocal jazz, all of which has garnered attention from critics across the US. Her musical career also includes working with some luminaries from the world of jazz. Articles about Bisantz’s music have appeared in People Magazine, USA Today, Jazziz Magazine, Jazz Today, The New York Times and several others. Among those Bisantz has worked with are Steve Swallow, Bob Moses, Paul Brown, Lew Soloff.
About Alex Nakhimovsky
Pianist Alex Nakhimovsky has toured internationally. He works as a performer, recording artist, producer, composer and educator. Nakhimovsky works in both classical music and jazz.
Nakhimovsky’s work has taken him to Russia, Japan and Israel, in addition to the United States. Like his collaborator, Bisantz, Nakhimovsky’s work has included projects and performances with jazz legends such as Benny Golson, Jimmy Cobb, Curtis Fuller, Bill Evans, Jazzmeia Horn and Rene Marie among other. He is currently co-founder and artistic director of the BSBI Jazz Festival in Manchester, Connecticut.
The sound of “Love’s Tango” by June Bisantz and Alex Nakhimovsky
The songs that Bisantz and Nakhimovsky bring to life have not only color – – the sounds they create can make audiences think of pastels, but the songs have texture as well. Certain listeners will easily see swirling pastel tulle and jersey fabrics.
The songs are emotive and intimate. They invite leaning forward and gaining an understanding of how the songs are put together.
The songs are invariably about love, but the approach is a bit different depending on the song. The sound elements of accordion and strings add an emotional and dramatic flair to song’s such as the title track, “Love’s Tango.”
Bisantz and Nakhimovsky are joined by an eclectic and busy ensemble to help them round out the soundscape of “Love’s Tango.” With guitar, bass, violin, viola, cello, accordion, flute, clarinet, sax, trumpet, flugelhorn, trombone, drums, vibraphone and percussion.
The sound of “Love’s Tango” the song evokes the sound of Italy, due in no small part to the number of instruments used to five the song a rich sound.
“This Reverie” is another song on the album that transports listeners by virtue of sound that feels as though it is imbued with color and movement. Bisantz’s voice is richly textured and stronger than audiences might believe it to be. There is a slightly breathy quality to her lower register voice. However, it becomes clear that Bisantz is in control of her voice. And just when it seems like the soundscape might overwhelm the vocals, Bisantz’s voice shines through and it does not sound as if she is straining.
Released just a couple of weeks ago, “Love’s Tango” brings to mind warm climes, dancing, sophisticated people, and might even remind some listeners of pop jazz group, Swing Out Sister.
While the Artic Blast takes over the US, for jazz fans, there is the comfort of warm-sounding music to transport them to faraway, romantic places. The work of Bisantz and Nakhimovsky is the kind of music to do that.