Pat Thomas (vcl), Lalo Schifrin, Claus Ogerman, Sammy Lowe, Billy Ver Planck (dir, arr), Johnny Hodges (as), Paul Horn, Bud Shank (fl), Hank Jones (p), Laurindo Almeida, Al Hendrickson (g), Buddy Clark (b), Mel Lewis (d), Frank Guerrero, Jack Del Rio (perc)
Reference: BMCD 884
Bar code: 8427328008846
· Collector's Edition
· Issued in Digipack
· 2 Original LPs + Bonus Tracks on 1 CD
· Original Cover Art and Liner Notes
· Stereo Recordings
· Newly Remastered in 24-Bit
Surprisingly, singer Pat Thomas is virtually forgotten even as part of the scene of which she was, all too briefly, a major talent. In Chicago, where she was born and raised, she was the most sought-after female singer by local and visiting musicians, who valued her way of handling lyrics. Pat could be classified as a pop-jazz vocalist. She had directness and clarity mixed with a subtle reading of a song, a warm vocal sound, impeccable intonation, and an unaffectedly sincere feel for the blues.
She was just 24 when she recorded the first English-language version of the bossa nova hit, Desafinado, for Verve in 1962; released as a debut single with One Note Samba it won her a Grammy nomination. Transferred to MGM for release, it was part of Desafinado, the album she made that year with some notable musicians, including Bud Shank, Laurindo Almeida, Mel Lewis and arranger Lalo Schifrin, plus orchestra. It sold well and led to a second album, Moody’s Mood, the following year, with orchestras arranged by Claus Ogerman and several others. Featuring Johnny Hodges and Hank Jones in some tracks it showed her range was much greater than her ready mastery of the Brazilian idiom and confirmed the further qualities of an artist hailed as “a good singer on her way to becoming a great one”. Somehow, that never materialised; she died, unheralded, in March 1992.
"Not well known these days, Chicago born and bred Pat Thomas was actually one of the first to do English language versions of the then nascent bossa nova genre back in 1962. These two albums, arranged mostly by Lalo Schifrin, but also including Claus Ogerman, showcase a strong toned lady who has rich enunciation with a dash of Ertha Kitt sass.
The 1962 Desifinado has Shifrin leading a band including Paul Horn/fl, Bud Shank/fl Laurindo Almeida/g, Mel Lewis/dr and Buddy Clark/b with strings, she sounds rich and evocative on “Recado Bossa Nova” and “Baia.” The lush support on “I Wish You Love” is like satin drapes, while “Manha De Carnaval” is a shining gem.” The Moody’s Mood album has her carry a torch on the title track and “The Nearness of You ,” while Johnny Hodge’s alto sax on “Try A Little Tenderness” and “Dreamy” glows in the dark. The mood gets shadowy on “Baltimore Oriole” and she’s having fun on “Stranger on the Shore” as Hank Jones supplies the piano work. Where does Fresh Sound find these obscure nuggets?"
George W. Harris (April 17, 2017)
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