Paula West @ Jazz at Lincoln Center - New York City Article

Paula West @ Jazz at Lincoln Center

Paula West @ Jazz at Lincoln Center

Dec 2, 2017, 12:00 am

The San Francisco-based singer, who, alas, hasn’t played Jazz at Lincoln Center since 2013, herewith makes a triumphant return in New York. Miss West, who headlined at the Oak Room of the Algonquin for much of the previous decade, was at the time celebrated for bringing a touch of jazz to what was then New York’s most venerated cabaret room; now, she’s doing the opposite, bringing the lyric-driven spirit and humor of the best cabaret artists to the most visible jazz club in the country. Ms. West’s strengths are still the same, only stronger, not least of which is the ability to switch gears between such traditional jazz-and-cabaret fare as Rodgers and Hart (“Lover”) and more contemporary songsters, like John Lennon (“Gimme Some Truth”), while stopping at such iconclasts as Oscar Brown Jr. (“The Snake,” “Hum-Drum Blues”) along the way. A formidable swinger as well as a storyteller, she still delivers the most compelling interpretation of “Like a Rolling Stone” that I’ve ever heard, as well as of Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “The Waters of March” - which, in her hands, is so soulful and personal that it could be titled “The Ethel Waters of March.”

Paula West
Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola
Jazz at Lincoln Center
Broadway at 60th Street, 5th Floor, (212) 721 6500
Through Sunday (December 3)

(PS: her quartet is also worthy of singling for praise out here: Bruce Barth, piano; Ed Cherry, guitar; David Wong, bass; Jerome Jennings, drums.)

for more info & reservations, click here.

Author: Will Friedwald
Photography by: STEPHEN SOROKOFF

Author: Will Friedwald

Will Friedwald writes about music and popular culture for THE WALL STREET JOURNAL & VANITY FAIR, and reviews current shows for THE OBSERVER and THE CITIVIEW NEW YORK. He also is the author of eight books including the award-winning A BIOGRAPHICAL GUIDE TO THE GREAT JAZZ AND POP SINGERS, SINATRA: THE SONG IS YOU, STARDUST MELODIES, TONY BENNETT: THE GOOD LIFE, LOONEY TUNES & MERRIE MELODIES, and JAZZ SINGING. He has written over 600 liner notes for compact discs, received ten Grammy nominations, and appears frequently on television and other documentaries. He is also a consultant and curator for Apple Music.

New Books:

THE GREAT JAZZ AND POP VOCAL ALBUMS (Pantheon Books / Random House, October 2017)

SINATRA: THE SONG IS YOU - NEW REVISED EDITION (Chicago Review Press, May 2018)