photo: Brian McConkey
Cory Jamison, the comely blonde singer, took to the stage at the Rrazz Room recently and quickly charmed the boots off everyone in short order. Imagine that. Boots are back in fashion.
Jamison, who lives in San Francisco, is about to be in fashion as well. She has a comedic, self-effacing style, but demonstrates her knowledge and her command of the Great American Songbook. She also has a way of making her audience feel as if they were old friends spending an evening in her parlor.
Jamison threw her audience into a little puddle of puzzlement when she pushed her accompanist, pianist Matt Clark, aside to play "Heart and Soul" in a deliriously inept way, as all of us as kids once did. Then she began to sing it as a ballad – an exquisite ballad, reminding us that Hoagy Carmichael and Frank Loesser wrote the old mainstay tune.
It only takes old masters to write a masterpiece. With the backing of Sam Bevan on bass, she stole all the hearts and souls in the room. It was a profound moment. Someone whispered to me, "I never knew that 'Heart and Soul' was such a great song."
Jamison has exquisite taste. She knows what a great song is. She sang one of my favorites, "When October Goes." That tune has a great history. Johnny Mercer, who at the end of his life befriended Barry Manilow, wrote the lyrics. After the great poet from Savannah died, Manilow set the words to music.
When Jamison sang it, you could feel the hairs rise on the nape of your neck. Let's face it, we all want October to come back again.
And let's face this: Cory Jamison will be here for a long time.
Listen to clips of Cory Jamison's songs at www.coryjamison.com.