Location: Los Angeles USA
Australian born singer, DeeDee Lavell is currently based in Long Beach California. Following her 2012 blues infused album Mama Told Me, this new release has taken a whole new direction.
The opening ballad You’re Everywhere written by Australian Liza Ohlback, includes sweet harmonies and gorgeous piano-work by Adam Faulk.
Sounds Of Love features a number of jazz and pop standards plus four self-penned songs. On the track-list are songs by notable artist’s Billie Holiday, Stevie Wonder, Joni Mitchell, Antonio Carlos Jobim (affectionately known as Tom) and a very cool cover of Prince’s Diamonds & Pearls.
In the company of those stellar songwriters, Lavell holds her own with her mostly Latin flavoured compositions Celebrate, Supernatural (Song for Maliq), Sounds Of Love and Why We Are Here.
Of her self-penned songs, Supernatural (inspired by her son Maliq), is my personal favourite, and of the standards… Stevie Wonder’s Bird of Beauty, showcasing DeeDee’s beautiful contralto vocals to full effect, is the most outstanding.
On first listen I found this album a bit disconcerting as I loved her earlier Mama Told Me CD and felt Lavell had found her niche in the blues, but having re-listened to Sounds Of Love a number of times, it became apparent that this album has all the required elements to stand on its own merit.
The ‘sleeper’ of the album – Why We Are Here – with its syncopated African-influenced rhythms and featuring beautiful instrumentation and vocals, creeps up on you when you least expect it.
All songs were expertly produced by Leonard ‘Doc’ Gibbs and recorded/mixed by Craig White in Philadelphia.
Singer/songwriter DeeDee Lavell can be proud of this “collective of love” which deftly demonstrates her passion, dedication and versatility.
Piano – Adam Faulk, Aaron Graves
Bass – Nimrod Speaks, Lee Smith
Guitar – Wendell Pops Sewell,
Miguelli (co-writer on Celebrate, Supernatural, Sounds of Love)
Drums – Anwar Marshall, Rocky Bryant
Percussion – Doc Gibbs (co-writer on Why We Are Here), Trombone – Steve Tirpak
Cello – Ginger Murphy, Violin – Julie Wong, String Bass – Antoine Lopez
BVs & arrangements – DeeDee Lavell, Liza Ohlback, Helen Bruner, Terry Jones