Jazz singer’s crooning charming

By Larissa Gula

’Round Midnight

Karrin Allyson


Grade: B+

Sounds Like: Jane… ’Round Midnight

Karrin Allyson


Grade: B+

Sounds Like: Jane Monheit, Diana Krall

Cabaret at Theater Square

Tomorrow, 8 p.m,

Tickets $25.75 – $30.75

(412) 456-6666



With three Grammy Awards under her belt, American jazz vocalist Karrin Allyson has some high expectations to meet with her upcoming album ’Round Midnight.

And she will meet those expectations. Allyson’s style is full of charm for jazz lovers. Her vocal work is impressive: She can switch between sounding soft and heartfelt to sounding low and even scratchy, bringing in a wide range of emotional depth through her voice alone.

The lyrics add to the depth and variation of her songs, with some offering insight into heartfelt moments and others invoking bittersweet or even angry memories of love gone wrong. The words themselves are beautiful, like in “I’m Always Chasing Rainbows,” where Allyson sings, “I’m always chasing rainbows / waiting to find a little bluebird in vain.”

Every track is strong but quiet in its musical delivery. Take “Goodbye,” a ballad about lovers parting ways, in which Allyson softly sings, “So you take the high road and I’ll take the low / it’s time that we parted, it’s much better so / so kiss me as you go / goodbye.” Here the music draws listeners in, ambling along with a slow piano, guitar and assortment of percussion instruments.

The percussion adds a layer to the mix and serves as a pleasant addition in the lulls between lyrics. In the end, however, the piano and vocals are this album’s strongest points musically.

Allyson’s songs are all well-thought-out, smoothly composed and haunting, resonating even after they end. Jazz lovers will be pleased, and the genre might even gain a few new fans with the release of this album.