Singer-songwriter-bassist Mimi Jones gives modern jazz a spritz of ethnic musical influences with a piping of Latin-soul, smooth funk, and soft jazz arias. Her latest recording, A New Day, will have you waltzing in the kitchen of your home through the scintillating glides of her bass in "Fast Lane," and tapping your feet to the swampy guitar pickings of "Watch Your Step" as Jones’ vocals shimmer with a gospel-toned inflection. Her music inspires an inner peace and a reverence for notes that take their time in pouring out. A New Day is Mimi Jones’ debut, and it is a fine piece of work for her to make her entrance onto the world stage.
The smooth funk batter of "Spiral" has a velvety bossa nova texture, and the wistful aria of "Mighty Time" has a soulful glow. The lightning streaks of Ambrose Akinmusire’s blazing trumpet in "Suite Mary" have a nu-bop twinkle, as Marvin Sewell’s guitar cuts wedge up against the rush of flashing whisks. The reggae beats of "Silva" support Jones’ vocals as she rows along the springy knolls. The album returns to a torchlight flicker along the melodic curves of "Close Your Eyes" and "All Things" creating a ballroom ambience. The R&B/funk consistency of Miki Hayama’s keyboards produces a euphoric air in "For Granted," and a refreshing club-feel in the frothy wavelets of "Sista." The flurry of guitar strings coursing through "Thank You" are pinched with a Spanish-lilt which showers the listener in a cascade of warm droplets, and the cooing resonance in Jones’ vocals in "We Shall Overcome" deliver an enchanting glint that makes one think of heroine in a romance novel.
The title of the CD, A New Day, expresses hope and optimism, which are an intrinsic part of Mimi Jones’ philosophy on life. Born Miriam Sullivan, she is the offspring of parents whose descendants are from Barbados and St. Croix. A graduate of Manhattan School of Music Conservatory, Jones is astute at playing the acoustic bass, the baby bass and the electric bass. Her music shows flexibility and a sense of worldly influences, which only an international artist would understand how to integrate. She makes it all look so easy.