On September 22nd, New York-based vocalist/composer Fay Victor will release her sixth recording as a leader, The FreeSong Suite (GAM 0091), on her own Greene Avenue Music label. The follow-up to 2007’s Cartwheels Through The Cosmos (ArtistShare AS 0061), this is her second recording of all-original music written for her longstanding working quartet, The Fay Victor Ensemble, featuring guitarist Anders Nilsson, bassist Ken Filiano and drummer Michael “TA” Thompson.
The FreeSong Suite documents Ms. Victor’s new stream of consciousness approach to creative vocal music, which accentuates spontaneity and improvisation by removing traditional boundaries between individual songs and genres. The recording features three long-form pieces made up of smaller compositions that flow in and out of each other as a running dialog. As in all of her ensembles, the vocalist and instrumentalists operate on equal terms, constantly shaping and directing the music through their balanced explorations.
“The beauty of Victor, who’s the absolute antithesis of polite vocal jazz, is her blending of soulful delivery with avant-garde tactics,” explains AllAboutJazz.com’s Managing Editor, John Kelman. “Cartwheels Through the Cosmos is that rarity amongst contemporary vocal jazz releases: an album that doesn’t rely on a tired repertoire and looks, instead, for innovation in every corner. Her fearless exploration of a myriad of musical nexus points makes [it] an album for those who normally stay away from vocal jazz.”
“Taking jazz singing forward with a unique form of expression,” declares Cadence reviewer Jim Santella, “Fay Victor delivers with authority. She reaches out with open arms to celebrate the freedom that comes with singing what you feel.” Jazzwise reviewer Selwyn Harris agrees, writing, “This New York-based vocalist actually stretches the definition of jazz vocals with Betty Carter, Hendrix and Sun Ra’s song-based cosmic poetry all in the mix.” “It’s rather like performing acrobatics atop a moving roller coaster,” adds JazzTimes‘ Christopher Loudon. “It’s tough. It’s gutsy. It’s brilliant.”
A New York native who spent her childhood summers in Trinidad, and seven years of her adult life as a member of the renowned Dutch jazz scene, Ms. Victor has been one of the city’s most active vocalists since her return in late 2003. Since then, she has collaborated with a wide variety of bandleaders, instrumentalists and fellow vocalists, including current projects with Ernst Glerum, Misha Mengelberg, Dom Minasi, Roswell Rudd, Tyshawn Sorey, Tomas Ulrich and Wolter Wierbos. In addition to The Fay Victor Ensemble, she also leads Fay Victor’s Jazz Vault and co-leads The ExPosed Blues Duo with Anders Nilsson. Learn more at http://fayvictor.wordpress.com