In the Lounge with Gary Williams - Album review for In Tune

This 17-track and 48-minute selection is one of the most relaxed albums that I have heard. I attribute this to the superb combination of the vocalist, musicians, arrangements and material lending itself to the gentle swing that is achieved throughout the set. The experience of entertaining at London’s prestigious Royal Garden Hotel on a regular basis has added to an already sparkling style of vocal presentation. The songs are ideally suited to the atmosphere that Gary wanted to achieve and he gets 10 out 10 for achieving just that. Stand out tracks, and it is genuinely difficult to single out just a few, are the opener “Music to Watch Girls By” with its subtle vibe’s from Andrew Cottee likewise “A Swingin’ Affair” last seen as part of the stage musical “Summer Holiday” (great double bass from Dave Chamberlain and Clarinet from Luke Annesley.) Always a favourite of mine is “I’m Glad There is You” a vintage song with a meaningful lyric and beautiful piano playing from Graham Harvey and gentle percussion from Matt Skelton. Given a running time of 4 minutes and 30 seconds this is taken at just the right pace. A definitive reading I suggest. And who couldn’t be pleased with “Let There be Love” a timely reworking of the Nat “King” Cole hit. All the accompaniments are charming throughout.

Gary pens an interesting liner note and there is even a note from author and music lover Alexander McCall Smith. This latest CD makes a beautiful companion to his earlier “Alone Together with Gary Williams and the John Wilson Orchestra on Vocalion CDSA 6809. A worthy Top 10 of 2006 CD in my book.

Clive Fuller for “In Tune” Magazine

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