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Sherri Roberts CD Reviews
Dreamsville CD cover Sherri Roberts
The Sky Could Send You
Blue House Recordings /
Pacific Coast Jazz  2005
Catalogue # 70001

Native Georgian cum San Franciscan Sherri Roberts has a perfectly balanced voice, well suited to the humid Caribbean fare featured on The Sky Could Send You. Harvie S ably guides the session on bass, with the charts and from behind the board. Roberts and S are joined by saxophonist Phil Woods and trumpeter Lew Soloff, whose presence increases the jazz-specific gravity of the pieces.

The recording begins with breezy renditions of Bobby Troup’s “You’re Looking At Me” (featuring guitarist John Hart), and Irving Burgie’s perfectly cast “Jamaican Farewell,” replete with Tim Collin’s mallets clinking like ice cubes in a tumbler of rum. Roberts and S composed the ballad “Before,” where S takes a thoughtful solo. Roberts then steps out to honor pianist Roger Kellaway by covering his “Tell Me My Name,” perfectly seasoned by Soloff’s round tone. Roberts' interpretation of Jimmy Webb’s “The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress” is about as far from Joe Cocker as one can get. The piece is a provocative combination of American and Latin sounds and again features Hart.

At the disc’s center are two Rodgers & Hart compositions, “You’re Nearer” and “Do It The Hard Way.” The former sports an East Coast piano trio ballad, sung evenly and sumptuously by Roberts. The trio is bareley tethered to the song, giving the piece a floating feeling. “Do It The Hard Way” has Roberts interpreting Chet Baker vocalese on perhaps the least Latin of the tracks. Roberts and S duet brilliantly for the first chorus, executing a rhythmic high wire act that accelerates as S hits 4/4 and Roberts channels Baker’s trumpet. S solos (and I mean solos) without losing a beat. The Sky Could Send You demonstrates the synergy two empathetic artists can share when the stars are in line. This is a wonderful vocal outing.

—C. Michael Bailey
September 2006,

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