Picks and Pans Review: Sometimes When We Touch
What do John Denver, Stephen Sondheim, Hoagy Carmichael, Erik Satie, Johnny Mercer, Chuck Mangione and William Shakespeare have in common? They are among those whose words and music are performed on this most eclectic of LPs by Laine, the British jazz singer, and Galway, the Irish flutist. Laine's usual collaborator, her saxophonist husband, John Dankworth, doesn't play this time, but supervised the arrangements of such traditional music as Gymnopédie No. 1 by Satie, The Pachelbel Canon by the 17th-century German Johann Pachelbel, and Lo! Hear the Gentle Lark (Henry Bishop's melody for verses from Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis). There are also renditions of Denver's Like a Sad Song, Sondheim's Anyone Can Whistle and Laine and Dank-worth's own charming Play It Again, Sam. The result, as producer Ralph Mace points out in his notes, is neither jazz, pop nor classical. It is, however, a blend of two of the most elegant instruments in modern music—Laine's contralto and Galway's flute—and an absolute marvel.