Ren's Music Reviews
Kimmy Kearse - "I Give You Me".
Kimmy Kearse - "I Give You Me".Great Voice and lyrics with Classic Jazz/R&B Sound
equals Powerful solo Debut...Once again in an effort to promote lesser-known artists and their albums and to be one of the first to introduce new artists to Jazz enthusiasts, retro-centrics and vintage aficionados, I’ve come across a few new Rhythm and Blues album from an artist of whom I genuinely hope that more people will hear from in the years to come with future releases.

With Kimmy Kearse's CD, I was sent one-page sheet with a brief bio which revealed that she wrote the songs she sang on her album.  She’s a double threat of singer song/writer and has the integrity to perform her own material. Now, let me answer the question for myself if this album’s any good.

The answer is pretty simple.  I enjoyed it – and I think that readers will too. Kimmie Kearse isn’t a knock off of Billy Holiday or another Ella Fitzgerald, but you can hear some of their influences in some of her music. This isn’t by the books retro-jazz or blues, either.  Much like Jamie Cullum’s “Catching Tales,” she makes the genre her own with just a subtle hip-hop on some of her songs.

Kimmie is also a generous artist, letting the other musicians perform on the same audio level as her, more than main stream artists do. She and the producers aren’t afraid to let the bass guitar and piano be equal to her voice… one of my greatest annoyances is that on many other albums the bass album is pushed back into the background, not so on this album. If you want to hear the guitars, you can hear them. Want to hear the trumpet that’s played on one of my favorite songs on this album, “One For Me?” You don’t have to struggle and strain to do so. Not like Mariah Carey or Whitney Houston (or some live performances by Faith Hill) who compete and almost fight with the instruments.  Kimme sings with them.

This isn’t an over produced album with a lot of clever sound effects or too many instruments. Since the album didn’t come with liner notes, I can only guess that she performed this album with a Jazz Trio or Quartet, which is how Jazz and R&B should be most of the time. (Except Big-Band Swing…)

Many of these songs have a very 1940’s nightclub sound to them, most of all is “Wishes…” I could almost hear her singing to the troops on a bandstand some night before being sent to Europe. Some of the songs like the last track “Full Time Lover” have a very tropical sound. Other songs stay with in the same jazz/R&B theme with a few exceptions that are modern updates and effused with some “rapping” of the lyrics on one or two songs.

The album does have a few flaws, where the sound does sound a bit muffled on a few songs and sounds under-produced. But Kimmy overcomes these small issues, and this artist really deserves a chance because of the power and passion that’s balanced with sensuality and beauty. I don’t want to read too much into what I’m hearing, but I get the sense that Miss Kearse is working to bring back the style of music that was so popular during the Golden Era of style.  That reason alone I think she deserves a listen and forgive some of the disk’s inadequacies.

Editors note: Since after writing this review and reading what others have said about this album, and there have been no other complaints about the audio sound, I have to believe the poor quality of this particular copy was just a fluke… this work is recommended by me, and I look forward to her future endeavors…

More information on Kimmy Kearse and her music can be found on his website.

You can purchase This CD Here.

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Written content copyright Eric "Renderking" Fisk,2005.
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