While the Great American Songbook and Bossa Nova might at first seem to be disparate juxtapositions, it’s wise to remember that Antonio Carlos Jobim and Joao Gilberto were huge fans of Chet Baker’s relaxed, lyrical delivery of standards. Baker remains an iconic pioneer of West Coast Cool, as both an immediately identifiable vocalist and versatile trumpeter.
On her new Concord Jazz release, “I Thought About You,” vocalist /pianist Eliane Elias pays tribute to vocalist/trumpeter Baker, without losing sight of her Brazilian roots. Eliane’s former husband, trumpeter Randy Brecker, puts his personal stamp on “There Will Never Be Another You, “ “That Old Feeling,” and “Just Friends.” His phrasing shows that he is aware of Baker’s clear tone and subdued style yet inventive enough to develop a sense of originality on these standards.
Just as Baker grew up listening to music of the ‘30’s and ‘40’s, Elias and Brecker obviously grew up with an appreciation for Baker’s charismatic delivery and subdued style. Elias, who has previously paid tribute to Jobim and Bill Evans on record, once again proves she is an artist beyond category!