When a band plays together for 15 years, the members breathe the same air and that was how the Tierney Sutton Band holding down the tiny-ass Blues Alley on Monday night. The band, which consisted of Tierney Sutton (vocals), Christian Jacob (piano), Kevin Axt (bass) and Ray Brinker (drums), performed together as a unit.
Ms. Sutton was not just a jazz singer. She was an integral part of the group. She used her voice as an instrument. Trading lines with the instrumentalists, Sutton always played around with her vocals, especially on the up-swinging tunes. On “What a Little Moonlight Can Do,” Sutton showed her remarkable sense of rhythmic by scatting and catching up with Ray Brinkers’s speedy tempo. Together the dynamic duo gave the standard a complete makeover. “Cry Me a River” also got a fantastic cover with an original arrangement and vocal treatment. “I Got a Kick Out of You” was fun, energetic and very unique. Love the opening bass solo, sensational piano improvisation, vigorous brushwork and Sutton’s playful scatting.
Alternating between fast swing and slow meditation, the band played some of the materials off its latest album, Desire including “It’s All Right With Me,” “Then I’ll Be Tired of You” and “Heart’s Desire.” The show was a perfect escape for a Monday night. My only dissatisfaction was that it was way too short. I wish the band covered my favorite “You Are My Sunshine.”