by Joe Regan Jr.

Jazz singer Martha Lorin held court May 18 at Café Noctambulo in a show entitled “Swing Can Really Hang You Up the Most,” with a great trio of jazz musicians:  Saadi Zain, Musical Director and on bass, Jon Weber on piano, and Sean Harkness on guitar.

There was very little patter in the act, only music on a series of standards, that she sang in different rhythms than are usually heard.  She opened with a very fast “Fly Me To The Moon,” but sang “Close Your Eyes” and “Just One of Those Things” and “Fine and Dandy” very slowly.  On Fran Landesman’s “Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most,” she let each of the musicians solo and Weber, who knew Landesman, was especially expressive.  Lorin’s tribute to Vernon Duke’s “April in Paris” was very mellow.  She gave great meaning to the lyrics of “Here’s That Rainy Day,” with fine work by Harkness.



It’s no secret that Lorin had a tremendous fire some years ago that affected her singing at the time.  However, she is singing better than ever and, even if she missed some lyrics, she had the intelligence to get prompted by Weber and start over again.  Although she had scheduled “Nature Boy” (which I heard in a sound check), she skipped that song to go right into “Young At Heart,” singing each chorus in a higher key!  And despite requests for “Lush Life,” she chose to close with “It Had To Be You.”

It’s a pleasure to hear her singing so well and her next appearance is on Tuesday, June 7 at 8 PM at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall at the Mabel Mercer Foundation’s “It’s De-Lovely:  A 125 Birthday Celebration of Cole Porter.”

Photos: Maryann Lopinto

Café Noctambulo at Pangea  178 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003   Phone:(212) 995-0900