Review: Missy Andersen – In The Moment

Posted on: Tuesday, Nov 25, 2014

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Missy Andersen – In The Moment

(Main Squeeze Records: MS1202)

This is (for a good number of people) the long awaited follow-up album from Detroit-born Missy, for she last shone and sparkled ever so brightly back in 2009 with the self titled ‘Missy Andersen’ now, she, with her husband, Heine; guitar, band leader and producer, present 11 new diverse, inviting and intriguing numbers. The impeccable backing is provided by Marty Dodson; drums, Bill Stuve and Michael McKinnon; bass, Ben Moore; Hammond organ, Sue Palmer; piano and Christopher Hoffee; percussion. While the scintillating horns are blown by Robbie Smith; trumpet, Gerard Nolan; tenor saxophone and Bob Mathes; baritone saxophone.

Her strong, distinct and compelling vocals still sweetly resonate with the underlying emotional influences she had immersed herself in, in Queens, New York the home of her youth, artists such as; Gladys Knight, Aretha Franklin, The Staple Singers, O.V. Wright, James Carr, Ann Peebles, Irma Thomas and James Brown through to Dinah Washington Sarah Vaughan and Billie Holiday, they are still as important to her today as all those years ago.

Now, firmly established in the musical world of San Diego with two recent nominations for the San Diego music awards and her boardroom level involvement with the not for profit organisation Blues Lovers of San Diego. As she herself states, her style is soul dipped in blues which easily enables her repertoire to incorporate all manner of styles and genres.

From the Louis Jordan influenced jumping and swinging “Rent Party”, Her richly deep, dark and warmly rousing vocals divinely combine with the rolling and balling horns while the tumbling, rinky-dink piano and Les Paul influenced guitar work from Heine merges to joyously invite all to come in and have a ball. “Night Stalker”, has a wonderful fifties marimba induced rumbustious late night club feel, with lots of lovely vampy Cuban ladies to chase away the wonderfully smoky, lonely, sleazy feeling trumpet.

On the heartbreaking ballad “More Than Enough”, a stark pleading Stax influenced horn section slowly surges over you; while Missy’s Hammond backed painfully soaring, pleading words to her man evoke genuine chills down the spine. The sprightly and engaging footapping gospel influenced shuffler “Reach Out”, has a splendid tramping percussive feel as the guitars roll, roam and swing behind the emotive, inspiring and inviting vocal and chorus as supplied by Missy, Sonja Mack and Karen Trapane.

The enticing, Chicago reminding James Harman’s coolly gentle harmonica blasting on “Better or Worse”, smoothly compliments Missy’s confidently swaggering vocals, while a grooving guitar supplied by Nathan James underpins all. The slowburning, high class “Ladies Shoes”, is led by a pairing of almost dawdling Jazz guitar and slinky cocktail piano, together they richly and regally underpin a towering and urging horn section that wraps itself around Missy’s burning vocals as she describes an eagerly anticipated expensive shopping trip.

Essential!

BRIAN HARMAN

www.missyandersen.com

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