Ronny Whyte is reviewed by Jersey Jazz

JERSEY JAZZ

November/December issue
by Joseph Lang

Oh for the days when you could hang out in intimate boîtes until the wee hours of the morning listening to sophisticated singers, often self-accompanying on piano, performing quality songs, many of which were rarely heard outside of that kind of setting.  RONNY WHYTE was one of those performers, as was, at the start of his career, Cy Coleman.  Whyte went on to be one of the most acclaimed pop/jazz singers on the scene, and Coleman devoted most of his energies to composing songs for Broadway musicals.  Their paths often crossed, as Coleman never lost his affection for the piano bar/cabaret scene, and often dropped in on a Whyte appearance, occasionally sitting in for a few songs.  In addition to his show tunes, Coleman wrote many stand alone songs that he performed, and were picked up by the likes of Whyte, Blossom Dearie, Bobby Short and Mabel Mercer.  It seemed inevitable that Whyte Witchcraft (Audiophile – 363), a 17-song collection of Coleman tunes sung by Whyte, would eventually become a reality.  It is certainly worth the wait!  Whyte has chosen tunes from both sides of the Coleman oeuvre, and does so in three settings, backed by the Cecilia Coleman Big Band, in his familiar trio format, and with the trio supplemented by accordionist Eddie Monteiro.  No matter the musical setting, Whyte delivers spot on performances of the Coleman songs, several of which will be new and welcome for the listeners.  Cy Coleman would have loved this collection!  (jazzology.com)

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