Los Angeles based pianist Ted Howe lives up to his stellar reputation as a stylish and inventive performer who, above all else, swings relentlessly. The aptly titled Love Song is an endearing collection of ten songs, freshly focused on the eternal musical theme of love.
Howe has the experience and ability to take the well worn classics of Harold Arlen, Jimmy Van Heusen, and Cole Porter and re-work them to satisfy the most discriminate listener. To accompany his hip arrangements of six standards, Howe, along with lyricist Rebekah Miller, premieres four of his own compositions with the aid of vocalists Giacomo Gates ("I’ll Remember Your Smile," "Midnight on the Beach") and Lainie Kazan ("If I Had Known," "Love Song").
Howe pays tribute to Cole Porter with a swinging, inventive trio arrangement of "Let’s Do It" an appropriate choice to get the session rolling. Harold Arlen’s classic "Come Rain or Come Shine" is a highlight of the disc; Howe guides the trio through a sophisticated, subdued, funky romp and Gates makes a surprise appearance on the ending vamp to scat the tune out.
Howe’s rhythm section is comprised of three world class musicians: Bassist Jim DeJulio, who has worked with Frank Sinatra and Vic Damone, bassist Chris Colangelo, who tours with Jack Jones and Doc Severinson, and drummer Matt Slocum, who tours and records with vocalist Sara Gazarek. DeJulio takes the lead on a waltz version of Van Heusen’s "All The Way." The bassist performs the melody and solos in a flowing, vocal-like manner. Colangelo, who takes a more aggressive approach to the bass, also proves himself an adept soloist on "Come Rain or Come Shine."
Amidst the frenzied pace of today’s world, Love Song is a soothing escape. Howe and company invite you to sit down, put your feet up, and swing along.