Katharine Whalen

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About Katharine Whalen

On Katharine Whalen's Jazz Squad, the Squirrel Nut Zippers vocalist/banjo player Katharine Whalen brings her lovely, quirky singing style to a collection of standards like "My Old Flame," "That Old Feeling," and "My Baby Just Cares for Me." In much the same way that the Zippers treat hot jazz as a living, breathing art form open to modern interpretation, Whalen and her Jazz Squad -- which includes fellow Zipper and husband Jim Mathus -- bring more personality than technique to this collection. Fans of Whalen's moments with the Zippers will enjoy this collection at its face value, and may want to investigate the works of Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, and the other divas she pays tribute to on Jazz Squad. Comparing Whalen to the songstresses she praises on this album may be somewhat unfair, but her love for classic vocal jazz comes through loud and clear. In the seven years that passed between Katharine Whalen's Jazz Squad the singer divorced Mathus and met up with producer David Sale, with whom she worked for her sophomore album, the avant-pop-laden Dirty Little Secret. ~ Heather Phares

North Carolina, United States
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