Claudia Acuña – Player’s Club
(MaxJazz – 2004)
by Paula Edelstein
This Brilliant label debut features both Spanish and English songs and bonus video. Luna is Claudia Acuna’s debut recording for the MaxJazz Vocal Series and features 11 songs written by several writers including originals from Acuna, Jason Lindner, Djavan and Kim Smith. The songs that Claudia Acuna offers on LUNA will affect you in many ways. Her sensitive, heartfelt, melodic delivery is sung in two languages Spanish and English and lingers in your heart and soul long after the CD ends. Joined by a new band that includes her longtime co-producer and pianist Jason Lindner, saxophonist Jimmy Greene (from their days with Avishai Cohen’s band), John Benitez on electric and acoustic bass, Gene Jackson on drums and Lusito Quintero on percussion, Ms. Acuna sings a beautiful set that entices your imagination to soar.
Top picks are “Meditation On Two Chords” a great song written by Kim Smith that reminds you of a song Flora Purim would choose to sing. “Beauty can be found deep within…” this inspired song and Acuna should make this the cornerstone of her concert appearances. “Yesterday, You and I” is also a keeper. It is also in English and features Acuna’s classic vocals purified with her elongated phrasings and soothing tones. Whether English or Spanish, her lovely music is definitely restorative and healing…so check it out. You’ll love Luna.