CD Make Believe [Jessica Molaskey] (CD 1092844),
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Make Believe [Jessica Molaskey]
1. I Cain't Say No
2. Guys and Dolls
3. Make Believe
4. Stepsisters' Lament
5. Glad to Be Unhappy
6. Hey, Look Me Over
7. So Many People
9. Growing Pains
10. All That Jazz
11. Right as the Rain
12. You're a Builder Upper
13. Cradle and All
14. Goodnight My Someone
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 422
John Pizzarelli; John Pizzarelli; Jim Czak
Jim Czak; Bart Migal
Personnel: Jessica Molaskey (vocals); John Pizzarelli (vocals, guitar, drums); Adam Guettel (vocals); Bucky Pizzarelli (guitar, drums); Antoine Silverman, Paul Woodiel (violin); Conway Kuo (viola); Clay Ruede (cello); Pamela Sklar, Pam Sklar, Shelley Woodworth (flute); Andy Fusco (alto saxophone); Harry Allen (tenor saxophone); Kenny Berger (baritone saxophone); Tony Kadleck, Bud Burridge (trumpet); John Mosca (trombone); Larry Goldings, Ray Kennedy, Lee Musiker (piano); Martin Pizzarelli (double bass); Tony Tedesco (drums).
Liner Note Author: Jessica Molaskey.
Recording information: Nola Recording, New York, NY.
Author: Hal Prince.
Photographer: Bill Westmoreland.
Arrangers: Don Sebesky; John Clayton; Larry Goldings; Jason Robert Brown.
Veteran Broadway actress Jessica Molaskey's third CD for PS Classics is a mix of favorites from musicals and standards from the Great American Songbook, though many of these compositions have not been recorded much at all for quite some time. Backed by a band that includes husband John Pizzarelli on guitar along with her guitarist father-in-law Bucky Pizzarelli, trombonist John Mosca, tenor saxophonist Harry Allen, and a number of superb New York-based musicians, Molaskey's acting skills come across even though the listener can't see her perform these timeless tunes. She sounds young and flirty in "I Cain't Say No" (from Oklahoma!) in a superb orchestration by John Clayton, while restoring the often omitted verse. She soars in the stunning strings and piano arrangement of "Make Believe." But one of the assets of Molaskey's choice of songs is rediscovering overlooked gems like "Stepsisters' Lament," making the most of its hilarious lyrics in a rapid-fire rendition. A very welcome guest is singer Adam Guettel (Richard Rodgers' grandson) in the warm duet of Rodgers' melancholy "Glad to Be Unhappy" with a brilliant orchestration by Don Sebesky. Husband John Pizzarelli sings with his wife in the humorous interwoven medley of Jon Hendricks' bop classic "Cloudburst" and Stephen Sondheim's "Getting Married Today," a real laugh riot arranged by Jason Robert Brown. Molaskey jointly wrote the bittersweet ballad "Cradle and All" with Ricky Ian Gordon, which features another fine orchestration by Sebesky. The only thing better than listening to this outstanding CD is getting to hear Jessica Molaskey perform in person. ~ Ken Dryden
JazzTimes (pp.73-74) - "Her dramatic chops come through on every track. That stage persona, supported by a valid jazz foundation, makes for a very enjoyable album."
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PS Classics/Image Entertainment 422
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