All In A Dream's Work...

By Al Lubiejewski

“Classic singers like Mel Torme, Nancy Wilson, Dakota Staton and the Four Freshmen, singing swinging arrangements with top-notch backing, turned me on to jazz in the 1950's.

Since then I've been subjected to loads of lesser singers who couldn't cut the jazz mustard. Oh, they may have fabulous voices, but they simply couldn't swing. Or they swung but projected no emotion or couldn't phrase convincingly. Or perhaps they just sounded like a frog (and I don't mean a velvet one). Fortunately, however, on occasion a voice will stop me dead in my tracks and remind me how good it is to hear a special singer for the first time. The voice of Kathy Kosins, on her self-produced, and basically self-written and self-arranged debut disc. All In a Dream's Work (A Collection of New Standards)(Schoolkids' Records SKL 1532), stopped me cold.

Admittedly not yet in Wilson's or Staton's class but with the goods to get there. Kosins swings and phrases like a veteran. And just as important, she's got a winning voice that's brushed with a hint of Diane Schuur, mixed with a dash of grit, mellowed by a cloud of smoke, and brightened by some of Ella's scat.

But a gal can't really swing unless her band does too. And Kathy's band's on fire. Her rhythm team is tight, sharp, and animated and crisp trumpeter Walt Szymanski takes most of the sometimes fiery, sometimes sultry solos.

Kosins' material -- ten tunes, all new stuff except for Miles Davis' "Four," all self-written except for the Davis tune and one other -- is as catchy as spring fever. But are these tunes really budding classics as the title claims? Well, I'm not sure they'll still be singing them thirty years from now, but I do know that after the first spin you'll have a tough time getting them -- and Kosins -- out of your head.“