Stories » Robin McKelle's 'No Ordinary Love' builds from a hushed subtlety to a passionate manifesto / SOUL TRACKS

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Robin McKelle's 'No Ordinary Love' builds from a hushed subtlety to a passionate manifesto / SOUL TRACKS

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Robin McKelle has spent the past two decades exploring the vast vocal terrains of jazz, soul, and the American songbook. On her ninth album, Alterations, the internationally renowned singer-songwriter delves into the works of female greats ranging from Billie Holiday to Janis Joplin and Dolly Parton. The first taste of the ambitious project comes via a remarkably fresh take on Sade's 1992 classic, "No Ordinary Love."

Placed in a classic jazz context peppered with Latin influences, McKelle's rendering of "No Ordinary Love" retains the sultry seriousness of Sade's original, but translates its understated arrangement into a lively affair with rich hues of soul. The lucidity of her contemplative phrasing and emotive tones glides instinctively with the rhythm section, which builds from a hushed subtlety to a passionate musical manifesto.

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