Fun Out of Life - CD
Fun Out of Life - CD
On her latest CD, “Fun Out of Life”, April Hall revitalizes the classic jazz standard, creating music that’s alive with energy and attitude. From subtly nuanced ballads to soul- drenched blues, the emotional power of her delivery is perfectly framed by the elegant simplicity of her arrangements.
Hall’s performance is deeply personal on “I’ve Got the World on a String” and unapologetically swinging on “Foolin’ Myself”. She sings Jimmy Rushing’s “Boogie Woogie Blues” with an authentic southern swagger, and gives an unforgettably sultry rendition of Percy Mayfield‘s protest song “Please Send Me Someone to Love” (featuring New Orleans saxophonist Amadee Castenell, of Allen Toussaint and Elvis Costello).
Add to these stunning vocals a stellar ensemble that organically follows the lead of Hall’s exquisite phrasing, and you can be sure that this collection of great American songs will provide any lover of jazz with a great deal of “Fun Out of Life”!
If you prefer to purchase CD's or digital downloads via traditional retail sites, April Hall's music is available at all traditional online retailers: CD Baby, iTunes, and Amazon.
1. I've Got The World On A String (5:03)
I love the eternal optimistic feeling this verse has, and the visual picture it paints. It meanders around and around until it comes to this gigantic release, both lyrically and harmonically, in the beautiful positive metaphor of “I’ve Got the World On a String” This song is my homage to my Dad’s positive outlook on life. Each time I perform it, I hear his voice in my ear saying, “Sing with your heart, honey. Sing with your whole heart.”
2. Boogie Woogie Blues (I May Be Wrong) (3:18)
This song reminds me of home. It’s one of those songs Jimmy Rushing did with Basie that just makes you feel good. It makes you feel good to hear it, and it makes you feel good to sing it. Sung with a little gleam in the eye, that great hook “I may be wrong, but I won’t be
wrong always,” seems to suit my personality. It’s a little bit humorous and it’s fun and everybody loves a blues!
Foolin' Myself (3:28)
This song practically begs for an easy, laid back, natural swing. It was written in 1937 but the idea of “foolin’ yourself” about relationships completely transcends era.
You Must Believe In Spring (5:46)
I chose this tune because the way the melody and harmony go together is like this big feast of possibility. It’s beautiful and richly layered, complicated, but in a way that intuitively makes sense. Being a southern transplant, besides the obvious metaphor of “You must believe in spring”, in the middle of winter I find myself taking the song literally.
Crazy He Calls Me (3:33)
This is the classic torch song, the “I’ll do anything for my man” story, (which I find moderately amusing in itself). It labels anyone who would blindly give their heart away
as crazy. However, the other side of the crazy coin is that without blind faith in love, you could never get to the type of breathlessness the song describes. One of my favorite lines in the song is “He moves me with a smile . . .” Now that’s romantic!
6. The Face I Love (3:37)
This is a pure love song that’s not pretending to be anything else. It’s transparent and lovely. In today’s cynical world, it’s refreshing to have someone say what they mean, and feel what they feel, without any apologies for their obvious happiness.
Please Send Me Someone To Love (4:32)
I find this Percy Mayfield protest song to be meaningful and extremely powerful. Cliche or not, I truly believe that if people focused less on who they hate, and more on who they love, the world would be a better place. Written in the ‘50s, it’s a love song, not about personal relationships, but about the great need for love between all humanity.
This Can't Be Love (2:59)
You can really dig your teeth into this song and enjoy it. The melody leaves a lot of room to play with phrasing and intent, and done at the right tempo it completely swings. I think the story of the lyric, that you couldn’t possibly be in love if you don’t feel physically sick, is hysterically funny and fun.
I'm A Fool To Want You (5:04)
To be balanced as an artist, you can’t just sing happy songs. In order to have great joy, you must also have great sorrow. I think this is the most heartbreaking song I’ve ever heard. Melodically, lyrically and harmonically, it’s the perfect specimen. If you want to make someone cry, this is the song you sing.
Nevertheless (I'm In Love With You) (3:13)
I recorded this tune because I thought it lent itself really well to this fast tempo. It’s like a freight train coming through!
How Deep Is The Ocean (2:51)
This is the best explanation I’ve ever heard of “How much do I love you?” When I perform this song, I always catch myself counting the ways of my own love stories.
Getting Some Fun Out Of Life (2:54)
Music, like everything else in life, is better when you’re having fun, and this song epitomizes that concept for me as an artist. Even though jazz can be extremely complicated and intense, it should always be fun and it should be swinging. “When I want to sing, I sing”, and “when I want to dance, I dance”, but no matter what, you can bet I’ll be having a good time.