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Barbra Streisand Sings Jazz Standards

Updated on April 20, 2018
Kenna McHugh profile image

Kenna has worked in the entertainment business for over 20 years, promoting special events with musicians, celebrities, and dignitaries.

Love is the Answer followed Live In Concert 2006. Not bad for a three-year break, Barbra sings the notes and lyrics like she is on stage in a cabaret.

Barbra Streisand the Love Inside

Listening to Barbra Streisand sing any song is pure joy. She takes singing to a level few have arrived at in their careers. I have never seen her in concert. Something that I would like to correct. Even if I sit in the bloody nose seats, a memory I cherish forever.

Though she is a singer, she is an actress turned filmmaker. The movies she's made are unique and missed the Oscar radar couple of times. Yentl comes to mind and The Mirror Has Two Faces. Both coming from Barbra's heart is clear. The Prince of Tides based on a bestseller might not be as personal as the others.
Hearing about her jazz album surprised me that it is only one. One jazz album with standards I hear anytime. Barbra sings them all so well.

Love is the Answer

Listening to Barbra Streisand sing jazz standards is not a dream. You can hear a true recording if you take the time to listen to her album called Love is the Answer. If you are for blood Streisand fan, then you know about this album. If not a fan but an admire, this may be the first time you ever heard she is also a jazz singer.

Streisand’s Love is the Answer arrived on the streets and radio airwaves in 2009. She sings like the songs are part of her being while performing them with a passion for jazz. “It’s a toast to life,” Barbra explained in an interview.

Barbra Streisand Live in Concert DVD

Love is the Answer followed Live In Concert 2006. Not bad for a three-year break, Barbra sings the notes and lyrics like she is on stage in a cabaret. Each song is jazzy with emotional lucidity. The depth and all maturity of her renditions are deep. But, cherished of early dawn thoughts of bygone sorrows looking for kindhearted comforts.

The jazz album meant Barbra working with the Grammy-winning jazz pianist Diana Krall. Her quartet, consisting of bass, guitar, and drums, commands a finesse. The tenderness is sheer and understated compositions. Barbra and Diana never worked together. You cannot tell because the music flows and blends.

Grammy Winner Arranger

Barbra experienced an exclusive pleasure during the studio recording of the album. Working with celebrated song-smith and Grammy-winner arranger Johnny Mandel completed the creation. Mandel had been in the studio before with Barbra in 1993 while recording her Back to Broadway album. He worked with Diane before arranging and co-producing. The outcome was Krall’s 1998 Grammy-winning jazz album called When I look in Your Eyes. The familiarity and talent in the studio are easy to understand Mandel's work. He brought his awe-inspiring orchestrations to their collaboration of Love is Answer.

Listening to the standards, some of them held my essence. “In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning” sung by legends like Frank Sinatra. “If You Go Away (Ne Me Quitte Pas)” is a version of the Jacques Brel standard presented in English as well as French. “Spring Can Really Hang You Up” is one of those songs Barbra sang before back in a St. Louis club when she was only 18. The same version is on the album, which is the first ever version of this standard produced in a studio.

Bossa Nova Movie

“Gentle Rain” is a tender bossa nova performance. Derived from Black Orpheus, a movie presented the rhythm style of Brazilian music. ”Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” is a wistful standard. It was first written in 1933 for Roberta, an operetta on Broadway by Jerome Kern and Otto Harbach. Nat "King" Cole performed the song and the Platters, as well as other great talents. “Some Other Time” is a jewel and is rarely performed. The song arranged by Leonard Bernstein with lyrics by Comden.

All jazzy and with emotional lucidity is wonderful. The depth and above all maturity she sings cherished. Her renditions are deep of early dawn. The thoughts of bygone sorrows looking for kindhearted comforts is tangible.

List of Jazz Standards

Jazz standards tickle my ears and fill my heart with delight. To hear Barbra Streisand sing them on the album Love is Answer is pure joy. Focusing on all album’s songs, I nod to “In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning” as my ultimate my favorite. A praised Sinatra standard, and Barbra’s version is frothy, despondent, and enchanting.

© 2018 Kenna McHugh

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