From the Critics:

Detroit Free Press, Mark Stryker, 10/20/2006
Claudia Hommel, a sweet-voiced chanteuse born in Paris, raised in Detroit and now residing in Chicago, has recorded an alluring CD in which she and vocalist Sean Harris reinterpret songs by Gabriel Fauré (1845-1924) accompanied by Chicago jazzers.
It's a rewarding concept, ...Pianist Dennis Luxion's arrangements honor the composer's proportioned melodies and impressionist harmony but also open the forms for improvisation.

Neil Tesser, Co-host, "Listen Here!", the public-radio jazz review

In this ambitious and fascinating project, Fauré's melodies now fit comfortably in a 21st-century cabaret or jazz club, as well as the recital hall for which they were first composed.
For a new audience, Fauré's somber evocation of the famous poem "Clair de lune" can take its place among the better-known compositions based on that astronomical phenomenon. Lilting, sprightly lines, like "Mai" and "Au bord de l'eau", blossom into music at once contemporary yet true to their source. "Spleen" (a.k.a. "Melancholy") becomes a bluesy torch song, just waiting for Diana Krall or Madeleine Peyroux.
And when you hear some more familiar tunes wending their way through the program—"Les feuilles mortes" (better known as "Autumn Leaves") or "La mer" (which Bobby Darin made famous as "Beyond the Sea")—rest assured that these standards belong here as well.
You won't find a better guide to the music of Fauré—to most anything French, for that matter—than Claudia Hommel, Chicago's homegrown chanteuse. But when you see that word, don't think Piaf or Dietrich. With a voice as clear as the bells of Notre Dame, Hommel is more the boulevardier: a stylistic inheritor to Maurice Chevalier, the quintessence of all things French, both happy and sad. As her voice twines with that of Sean Harris—Hommel's male counterpart, a throaty tenor whose full embrace of this material deserves special mention—they make the music sparkle, with insouciance and yes, with joie de vivre.

Pioneer Press, March 14, 2007: French art songs get jazz twist

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