Saturday, September 17, 2011

Now available through Middle Eight Music...Lee McAllistair's stunning new jazz album, Spellbound!

Lee McAllistair - SpellboundLee McAllistair - Spellbound

Australian jazz vocalist and composer Lee McAllistair has enjoyed an international career over the past 15 years. She has performed at London’s famous 606 Jazz club, the Famous Spiegeltent (UK and Australia), the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, in Asia and at major festivals, events and venues around Australia.

Lee studied with respected jazz vocalists Anita Wardell, Jo Lawry and Connaitre Miller at Adelaide University's Elder Conservatorium of Music, before going on to join the vocal jazz teaching staff at the University for two years. Since her move to Sydney, Lee has studied with Kristin Berardi and recently furthered her composition studies with the Stanford University summer jazz residency in August 2011.

Lee now launches her first album, Spellbound, consisting entirely of original jazz songs, and featuring long-time collaborators Mark Simeon Ferguson on piano, Mike Bevan on guitar and Lyndon Gray on bass, with guest guitarist James Muller.

The album is a lush musical soundscape that traverses diverse musical ground, from Latin, blues and swing to more pop-influenced tunes. Lee is also a talented lyricist with a penchant for double entendre and using musical terms to describe emotions and situations.

Here's how Lee describes her album: "My focus is always great melody, memorable melody – I pay homage to the craft of the jazz standard, even though these are new songs. And for me the lyrics appear simultaneously with the melody and are as much a part of the music as the notes. Spellbound is also a very emotional journey. It’s about finding that dreamy place where you step back and realise that while life is not the prefabricated fairytale you thought it would be, it’s somehow just perfect, with all its flaws, exactly as it is. Finding perfection in imperfection is what this album is ultimately about."

"Given her background, experience and abundance of exceptional vocal and compositional talents, Lee McAllistair deserves to be far better known in Australia...Her vocal style is a little reminiscent of Peggy Lee, using similar expressive phrasing, but with a mistier, more fragile quality, over a wider range, and she writes strikingly beautiful songs that work very well on musical and poetic levels...While there is no shortage of able female jazz vocalists in Australia, there are very, very few able to write as convincingly and memorably as McAllistair." - John McBeath, The Australian

Lee McAllistair - vocals
Mark Simeon Ferguson - piano
Mike Bevan - guitar
Lyndon Gray - bass
James Muller - guitar

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