Allan Harris – Live at Blue LLama (ENG review)

Love Productions Records in association with Live at the Blue LLama Records – Available
Allan Harris - Live at Blue Llama (ENG review)

Singer and guitarist Allan Harris presents his new album “Live At Blue Llama,” a brilliant, tender, and friendly live performance that kicks off with a cover of Sony. We particularly love his way of appropriating the songs, all of which are hits, injecting his soulful touch. As we progress through this live recording, the tracks become more deconstructed in a very soulful jazz, featuring pianist and keyboardist Arcoiris Sandoval – piano; Marty Kenney – bass; Norman Edwards – drums; Irwin Hall – saxophone/flute.
As always, the choice of purely acoustic instruments ensures that this album will not age. Moreover, technically, the sound recording is quite remarkable, successfully highlighting the singer’s voice while preserving the “Live” atmosphere. In the manner of a Sinatra, Allen uses his voice like an actor, chatting and interpreting the songs with his warm vision. Nicknamed the “King of New York Vocal Jazz,” Allan Harris has been delighting audiences for nearly four decades, and we hope he will continue to do so for a long time, offering us such beautiful albums and allowing his audience to experience him live.
Ready to perform for two nights at the Blue Llama in January 2023, Harris decided it was time to capture the sound and atmosphere of this particularly solid group. He thought that the Ann Arbor, Michigan venue would be the ideal place to do so. With top-notch jazz and exceptional acoustics, the Blue Llama is one of Harris’s favorite places to perform. “Allan Harris Live at the Blue Llama” captures the vocal maestro in optimal form and showcases the engaging warmth and crackling magic that only live music can bring.
Most of the time, I hate cover albums, especially when they feature jazz standards often butchered by various artists. So, I was eagerly anticipating listening to tracks like “So What,” “Spain,” or “Nature Boy.” Allan Harris is unquestionably a great artist because, once again, he works wonders on these tracks. Amidst it all, he introduces a pure blues with “Black Coffee Blues”—who better than Allan is capable of blending genres without weighing down the structure?
This is an album that we listen to in wonder, like a child, thanks to an artist at the peak of his craft and his ability to integrate various sources from his own culture with extreme intelligence and skill! An album deemed “Essential” for many reasons by the editorial teams of Bayou Blue Radio and Paris-Move.

Thierry De Clemensat
USA correspondent – Paris-Move
Editor in chief Bayou Blue Radio, Bayou Blue News

PARIS-MOVE, January 11th 2024


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