Lindsey Webster – Back To Your Heart (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 1:00:09 minutes | 662 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Digital booklet | © Shanachie Entertainment
New York’s Lindsey Webster is gifted vocalist and songwriter who performs in a variety of styles from straight-ahead jazz and traditional pop to soulful smooth jazz and crossover R&B. A native of Woodstock, New York, Webster grew up playing cello, eventually shifting to singing while attending Fiorello H. LaGuardia School of Music & Art and Performing Arts in New York City. After meeting her collaborator and husband, pianist Keith Slattery, in 2009, she embarked on a fruitful solo career, releasing an independently produced eponymous album in 2013. Two years later, she returned with You Change on Atlanta Records. In 2016, Webster released her sophomore album, Back to Your Heart. Featured on the album was the single “Fool Me Once,” which hit number one on Billboard’s Smooth Jazz Songs chart. ~ Matt Collar
Jazz requires a certain degree of commitment. It’s not a genre that gets featured during any of the award shows. Jazz artists don’t get to have microphone or wardrobe malfunctions during New Year’s Eve progams on live television. Jazz songs don’t show up on video games and has largely vanished from film. Even movies which purport to be influenced by jazz (Whiplash, La La Land, Miles Ahead) are long on drama and short on the music itself.
As 2017 begins, don’t sleep on one of the best debuts of 2016; Back To Your Heart, an earth and earnest debut from Lindsey Webster. Webster announced herself in 2015 with “Fool Me Once,” a soulful original that went to Number One on Billboard’s smooth jazz charts and pulled off the not-too-shabby feat of being the first vocal-driven song to reach the top since Sade’s “Soldier of Love in 2010.
It’s a good time for Webster. There’s a lot of talented young’uns like Ashleigh Smith, Morgan James, Esperanza Spalding, and when you’re vying for the limited air space and resources set aside for jazz, you’d better be good as well as committed. Lindsey Webster is good and she is committed.
Deviating from the safe route, Webster doesn’t fall back on tried-and-true tricks such as mining the Great American Songbook for gold, covering last year’s pop hit, or loading up on guest stars. Kirk Whalum wanders in to blow a short sax solo and wanders back out never to heard again on Back To Your Heart. All you get is Webster, her voice, her songs and a tight band taking its time on 11 tracks.
This makes for a honest and open listening experience. “Back To Your Heart” is the lead-off single and it’s good, real good, but “Where Do You Want To Go” is smoky hot. It’s sexy and it’s cool and it’s hot all at the same time, but never is it obvious or tacky. It’s how grown folks talk to each other when they’re feeling frisky, not freaky.
The album sags a bit past the halfway point with a couple of tunes that might have benefited from an outside producer’s touch, but odds are good, that wasn’t in the budget. No problem. Webster and /producer/co-songwriter, Keith Slattery, who also plays keyboards, have come up with a dynamic and emotional debut. Webster is soulful, authentic and belongs on the short list of new talents keeping the tradition alive and taking it to the next level.~~ Jeff Winbush, AllAboutJazz
01. Back to Your Heart
02. Where Do You Want to Go
03. I Know You Well
04. Those Three Words
05. One at a Time
08. Living a Lie
09. Aint It Funny
10. Next to Me
11. Fast and Slow
Lindsey Webster – vocals
Keith Slattery – keys
Mike DeMicco – guitar
Fred Doumbe – bass
Dan Hickey – drums
Foluso Mimy – percussion
Kirk Whalum – sax (5)
Tony DePaolo – sax (4, 11)
Ken Gioffre – sax (6, 9)