July 31, 2009

Mod-A-Day: Pink Martini

Pink Martini is not your average little big band. It's more of an intellectual jazz collective with a wondrous musical talent and need to spread it around. The group's core due --pianist Thomas Lauderdale and vocalist China Forbes-- met at Harvard where they were studying such head stuff as literature and history. Flash forward to the cocktail nation's New York City uprising in the mid-to-late 90s, Lauderdale rings up Forbes to see about putting together a big band and Pink Martini comes into full fruition. Thier debut album, and still my favorite (though they are all good), Sympathique appeared in 1997, made an international splash, and sold a measly 750,000 copies. Their second, Hang On Little Tomato, featured mostly original material and sold more than half a million copies. Their latest, Hey Eugene has perhaps their most truly jazz feel with lots of cool, sultry songs like City of Night, the title track, and a very swank version of Tea For Two featuring a perfect pairing of Forbes with legendary jazz man Jimmy Scott. The song here, "Amado Mio", hearkens back to that first release and is actually a rearrangement of a film noir track from 1946,

Pink Martini -- Amado Mio

Pink Martini - Hey Eugene