MUSIC FOR YOUR EARS | REVIEW Enchantée by Marla Lewis
Marla Lewis, a brilliant New Jersey-born singer and songwriter, has been working 25 years as an elementary school teacher. During this time, she has written many songs for her students, one of which, Leap of Faith, co-written with Nancy Schimmel, appeared on a GRAMMY-winning children’s album in 2011, entitled ALL ABOUT BULLIES…BIG AND SMALL. She has released several award-winning Children’s albums (I LOVE TO TALK TO PLANTS, 2009, and WE ALL LAUGH IN THE SAME LANGUAGE, 2007) with two-time Grammy-winning producer Bob Stander. Her records have won Parent’s Choice Gold and NAPPA Gold, and her songs have won First Prize and Finalist in national and international song competitions. Branching out from children’s writing, Marla’s first smooth jazz album, SONGBOOK, was also produced by Bob Stander. It contains 14 original songs which have been extremely well received.
Maria’s influence from her own childhood has always been big bad, folk and a mix of jazz and swing, all of which is reflected in her work. Enchantée, Marla’s first single from her new EP, SONGBOOK VOLUME 2, is true to her roots, and showcases the smooth jazz and American Standards that have made her sound so notable. Again collaborating with Bob Stander, and featuring Teddy Kumpel (guitar), Rob Jost (bass), Matt Miller (drums), Mike Ricchuiti (piano), Erik Lawrence (Sax), and Adam Minkoff and Gabby Scherba (Background vocals), these six tracks feature an eclectic, and romantic mix of samba and swing.
This piece of jazz and adult contemporary music is all about an atmosphere of calm and good feelings. It invites you to sit back and enjoy a great experience and it is well worth taking the time and listening to it attentively. The track allows the tenderness and vitality in Marla’s voice with velvety tones to shine through, and her personality be known. The melody is attractive, with memorable verses. The emotive lyrics avoid falling into the excessively abstract area which some others occupy, and instead are engaging, if blunt, and invite the listener to pay then the attention they deserve. The instrumentation features the piano, alongside the guitar, bass, drums and sax, all of which combine blissfully with the background vocals.
The singer and composer of this song shows a formidable music ability. Her form of modern jazz will attract both jazz fans as well as those how simply appreciate good technique and music which is easy to listen to.
Truth to tell, I wasn’t sure I liked jazz, but I am definitely a convert now. I strongly recommend this track and EP to all of those who like their music to be meaningful but non-abrasive. It would be a real pity to miss this opportunity to broaden your horizons or consolidate your musical tastes. Either way make time for this track, you will not be disappointed.
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