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  • Writer's pictureladiesvoices

Fabulous Friday: Vaughan and Fitzgerald, "The Sh of Your Sm"

I was going to use this Sarah Vaughan performance of "The Shadow of Your Smile" as my example for the Diva/Mensch post on Wednesday, but it didn't make sense of have this High Diva performance by Miss Vaughan when the song was being the Mensch. Tony Bennett was the perfect choice, the ultimate Mensch of the American Song.

She really is a jazz instrumentalist whose instrument is her voice. The proof is in the first moment - - she holds the word "The" for a long time. I don't believe Ella Fitzgerald would do that, because her singing is rooted in the words in a deeper way. Sarah Vaughan brushes the words away if she has something more inventive to do with the music.

Here's Miss Vaughan and her fabulous eye makeup.

And lookie here - - Ella Fitzgerald doing the song. As expected, the word "The" leads directly to the next word without any lingering. Of course Fitzgerald was shoe-horned into an arrangement with a full orchestra in a studio session to cut a single, unlike Vaughan, who was working live with a trio in a concert. But still...

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