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Vocal Jazz Sensation SYNCOPATION Releases WONDERFUL YOU
(Published: March 27, 2008)

"The Manhattan Transfer of the 21st Century."The Boston Globe

"Thoroughly modern, bright and fresh take on ensemble jazz vocals that effectively updates the entire genre."

The electrifying, Boston-based vocal jazz quartet Syncopation announced the release of their new CD, Wonderful You their first U.S. recording in six years on Thursday, March 27, 2008. On the new CD, Syncopation reinterprets pop songs from the past 30 years, including songs by Radiohead, Mr. Mister, the Stylistics, Earth Wind and Fire, Joni Mitchell, and piano phenom Hiromi, transforming R&B, soul, folk rock, fusion and electropop with their own jazz harmonies, rhythms and style. Along with singers Aubrey Logan (soprano, trombone), Christine Fawson (alto, trumpet), David Thorne Scott (tenor) and Tsunenori Lee Abe (bass, arranger/composer), Wonderful You features Syncopation's touring band, Mark Shilansky on piano, Steve Langone on drums, Greg Holt on bass and Marcus Santos on percussion. The CD is available at amazon.com, CdBaby.com, and the group's website, jazzsyncopation.com.

About Wonderful You
Breakout was a hit in the 80s for Swing Out Sister, an English band with some jazz sensibilities, so it wasn't a stretch to modify the tune with a groove from Brazil: samba de paltido alto. Percussionist Marcus Santos came up with the intro, a call-and-response percussion dialogue, in the recording studio, and the result is something you might hear from a street band in Rio. On Can Fly Howard Boles's lyrics soar over Lee Abe's peaceful, floating melody. The tension builds gradually until David's tenor voice dramatically takes a turn into a new key. At the end, the calm returns like a feather settling to earth. The arrangement gives each of the four singers a chance to make a statement. Wonderful You is by world-renowned jazz piano phenomenon Hiromi Uehara, who also happens to be a friend of Lee. He heard the groovy perfection of her tune Big Chil a bonus track on the Japanese edition of her Telarc recording Spiral, and asked if he could arrange it for Syncopation. After securing Hiromi's blessing, Christine fleshed it out with lyrics. "High and Dry" is a song by Radiohead, an inspiration for many independent musicians for its efforts to change the dynamic of the music business. The group also happens to write some amazing songs, including this heartbreaking plea about abandonment. Aubrey goes way up into soprano-land to bring home the message, up and over the wordless dance of the other three voices.

"Invisible War" is by Julia Fordham, a UK-based singer/songwriter who is going the independent route these days after having some success on the pop charts in the 80s and 90s. Christine plumbs the depths of regret in Fordham's poignant lyrics, accompanied solely by Mark at the piano. This arrangement is an intimate exploration of a personal message. Broken Wings was the first single for Mr. Mister. When David was growing up, bands like Mr. Mister made it cool for guys to sing high notes. This arrangement distills the aching feeling of the original by adding atmospheric jazz harmonies, a Tutu-esque trumpet solo by Christine, and a long, slow buildup to the solid backbeat on the final chorus. The sophisticated 1970s soul music of the Stylistics "Betcha by Golly Wow," with its meter changes and surprising chord progressions, is prime material for jazz exploration. This easy listening hit gets new life with a hard-driving 12/8 groove and a searing vocal solo by Christine. Getaway is Earth, Wind and Fire's funky masterpiece. Who knew that its dance-floor intensity would translate so well to up-tempo swing? Everyone gets to stretch out and improvise on this barnburner. "Both Sides Now" is an examination of life and love by one of modern music's most celebrated masters, Joni Mitchell, who recorded this song at age 26 and again at age 57. The a cappella arrangement features a dazzling solo by Aubrey, expressing both the innocence and the experience of Joni's message.

To hear cuts from Wonderful You, or to download jpegs, visit Syncopation's electronic press kit at: www.sonicbids.com/syncopation.

For more information, interview requests, or CDs, contact:
Toni Ballard, toniballard@townisp.com, 508-633-8583

More Information: http://www.jazzsyncopation.com

Submitted By: Toni Ballard

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