Some musicians develop empathy over time. For singer, Stacey Kent and saxophonist, Jim Tomlinson, their uncanny bond seemed to be as instant and natural as if they were the completing pieces to each other's musical jigsaw puzzle.
In a career spanning 20 years, their achievements have been many. A series of award winning standards albums gave way to a rich and varied expression, reaching it's pinnacle with their latest album, I Know I Dream, which won "Jazz Vocal Album of the Year" in the '2018 Jazz Japan Awards'. I Know I I Dream is an orchestral album featuring bossa nova, standards and most notably, more original songs composed by Jim with, among others, the Nobel Laureate novelist, Kazuo Ishiguro, with whom Stacey and Jim have been working for the last eleven years.
Since signing to Blue Note in 2007, their output has become ever more eclectic. Beginning with the Grammy-nominated and Platinum-selling, Breakfast On The Morning Tram. The ensuing series of albums honed their distinctive sound, with Stacey's expressive and refined voice, and with Jim's arranging, composing and producing skills, helping to define a signature style. Stacey's skills as a linguist were to the fore in the all-French album, Raconte-Moi, and her fluency in Portuguese has allowed her to work with several Brazilian artists, such as Marcos Valle, with whom Stacey and Jim recorded his 50th anniversary album, Ao Vivo, live in Rio De Janeiro and DVD, live in NYC and Japan.
Stacey's 2015 album, Tenderly, featuring Brazilian guitarist, and one of the fathers of Bossa Nova, Roberto Menescal, took her back to the standards, confirming that her interpretative instinct had only deepened over the decade. It is a series of definitive, minimalist readings of the American Songbook, reminiscent of the great albums of Julie London and Barney Kessel.
With Claes Crona's wonderful trio, Stacey and Jim will present a program of songs that will showcase their individual and combined mastery, showing why their fan base keeps growing.
"Stacey's singing never lets us forget these songs are about people. Her protagonists come to life so fully in her voice, you sometimes have to remind yourself the CD has no visuals. She has, in fact, much in common with today's finest screen actors who, assured of the camera's ability to pick out detail, portray complex shades of personality, motive and feeling through subtle adjustments of face and posture....here's a great jazz diva of our age." - Kazuo Ishiguro
"Ms. Kent embodied the essence of saudade as persuasively as any of her Brazilian idols. As she threw back her head and crooned softly, you had the sense of a woman with nothing to protect, living in the moment and dreaming out loud.' - Stephen Holden, THE NEW YORK TIMES