Barbra Lica debut CD—THAT’S WHAT I DO—reviewed by Stanley Fefferman

Barbra Lica has a classy kewpie-doll voice like jazz-singers Blossom Dearie and Stacey Kent.

Touches of class are all over her debut CD That’s What I Do, starting with the jazz all-stars of her band: Archie Alleyne on drums or Steve Heathcote; Reg Schwager or Rob Piltch on guitars; Brian Dickinson, Joe Sealy or Robi Botos on piano; Paul Novotny on bass; Kevin Turcotte on trumpet; Bob DeAngelis and Tom Szczesniak respectively on clarinet and bass—a line-up as good as it gets.

Barbra’s set-list is a bold and tasteful dish of high end standards (Gershwin, Mercer, Jobim, Billy Joel), pop chestnuts (“You are My Sunshine,” “P.S. I Love You.” “Pretend,” “Young at Heart”), and half a dozen originals.

If you like these standards and chestnuts done with a true jazz flair you are going to love listening to Barbra do them. Her voice and singing style are captivating, and the arrangements are impeccable. Just listen and feel better, like letting in sunshine and fresh air.

Barbra’s lucid phrasing and pacing are markedly intelligent, like most of the instrumental solo’s, especially Perry White’s tenor sax solo on “But not for me.”

The opening original, “Because I Say So,” and the closing (album title song) “That’s What I Do,” (both co-written with guitarist Colin Story) are typical of Barbra’s work:  distinct melody, naturally flowing lyric lines, stylish structure, clever rhymes(“sweater/weather, enjoyment/employment), and a positive, out-front, confidence.

It’s a pleasure to be around any tune Barbra is singing. Bring it on.

Barbra Lica,THAT’S WHAT I DO,Paul Novotny,producer. Triplet Records Inc.

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