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tmsorosk
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Best female Jazz vocalist

What is your nomination for best female Jazz vocalist of all time ? You can add a few points if she's an instrumentalist too .
Eva Cassidy has been on my spinner a lot lately .
If you can't cheer up , Jazz up .

jazzfan
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My nominations

Billie Holiday
Ella Fitzgerald
Sarah Vaughan
Abbey Lincoln
Dinah Washington
Nina Simone
Holly Cole
Karrin Allyson
Cassandra Wilson
Helen Merrill
Jane Monheit
Patricia Barber
Dee Dee Bridgewater
Carmen McRae

Just to name a few.

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Well, there is Ella,

then there is Ella.

I have heard some of those that Jazzfan lists, and I like all of them. But for me, Ella is the best singer in the world.

Trey

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female jazz vocalists

Great names so far.

May I add:

Diana Krall & Carol Kidd

My vote for best all time has to be Ella

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Out of the frozen north

You'll get no argument from regarding Ella. While Ella is not my personal favorite (I prefer Billie Holiday and Sarah Vaughan) Ella is truly one of the all-time greats and perhaps the purist jazz singer of them all. Holiday excelled at blues, as did Dinah Washington, and Sarah Vaughan had one of the greatest voices of all time, yet Ella could swing better than either of them.

Apparently there is a great love of female jazz vocalists in both Japan and the Scandinavian countries and lots of new vocalists are appearing on the scene from both locations. A few of the ones worth checking out are:

Caecilie Norby - Arabesque (2010)

Susi Hyldgaard - It's Love We Need (2009)

and while from the "frozen" north, Caro Emerald - Deleted Scenes From the Cutting Room Floor (2010) is worth a listen or two. Emerald is from the Netherlands. And from Belgium there is Lady Linn - Here We Go Again (2008).

I've only barely scratched the surface since it seems like everyday I see a mention of another female jazz singer who hails from somewhere outside of the US.

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Female vocalist

Has anyone heard Beyonce's Jazz/blues side . The other night we were watching a movie called Cadillac Records on Blueray , Beyonce played Edda James and sang some of her songs , it blew us away , I had no idea this Rock/pop singer could do Blues like few others . Lots of other good music in this vid , Muddy Waters , Little Walter ect if your into it . Sound quality was better than most too .

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Pleasant surprise

I agree that Beyonce was indeed a very pleasant surprise in "Cadillac records". In fact the entire movie was a very pleasant surprise. Only one problem: if one listens to Beyonce's renditions of Etta James' songs and then the Etta James originals, the Beyonce versions pale in comparison. Even though the new versions have the benefit of more modern recording techniques the 50 year old originals just a special magic that can't be recast.

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best female jazz singers

agree 200%!

I cannot believe I forgot to mention Etta earlier as well. If you haven't been following in the news she is in very poor health.

And everyone should watch the movie "Cadillac Records" for the movie and the music.

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Etta = blues
quadlover wrote:

agree 200%!

I cannot believe I forgot to mention Etta earlier as well. If you haven't been following in the news she is in very poor health.

And everyone should watch the movie "Cadillac Records" for the movie and the music.

Just to set the record straight Etta James is much more of blues and R&B singer then she is a jazz singer. Not that she doesn't or can't sing jazz but rather that she's more well know for her blues singing. So don't feel bad for not listing her as a jazz singer.

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With all due respect

while on the subject of properly categorizing...that you would classify your above new Japan and Scandinavian recommendations as 'jazz' singers is, well...

you're kiddin', right?

RG

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Not American???
RGibran wrote:

while on the subject of properly categorizing...that you would classify your above new Japan and Scandinavian recommendations as 'jazz' singers is, well...

you're kiddin', right?

RG

While some the Japanese and Scandinavian vocalists do stray away from the standard jazz song book and into popular music every now and then they are basically just as much jazz singers as their American counterparts. By the way I did list any Japanese singers by name since they tend to be more traditional and much less adventurous than the Scandinavian singers.

Remember that the songs we now think of as standards were often the popular music of their day. The ability to turn pop music dross into jazz gold has always been the mark of a quality jazz artist. Their country of origin should not be a factor.

Of course RG, you being an old timer here on this forum and well aware of my disdain for Jazz at the Pawn Shop, I expect you to jump at this seeming contradiction. Let me point out that it's not that JATP is bad, it's just that I feel that the music is not good enough to warrant the revered status this recording as achieved within the audiophile community and press. There are many foreign (as in not American) jazz artists who are very good - Misha Mengelberg, Jan Garabek, The Moutin brothers, Albert Mangelsorff, Peter Brotzmann - to name but a few.

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jazzfan ... Out of your

jazzfan ... Out of your recommendations , the only one we hadn't seriously listened to was Nina Simone , so we picked up one of her C.D.s ( The Jazz Essentials ) when we were music shopping and have just been enjoying it . Thanks for the tip , is there any other of her disc's that you would recommend ?

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Nina

Nina Simone is one of those artists that once one gets a taste of and for one suddenly can't get enough of - think Miles Davis or John Coltrane. very few people who like Miles or Trane have only one of their recordings, they tend to have quite a few and in many cases are always looking to acquire more. Nina Simone is one of those types of artists and since I really like Simone I have more than a few of her recordings.

To matters even more complicated there are almost as many "Best of" Nina Simone CDs as there are regular Simone CDs. Simone also recorded for several different labels during her career and often the various "Best of" collections (I'm using the generic term "Best of" as a stand in for all of the various compilations currently available) feature only recordings from a given label.

So that long winded introduction was a way of saying pick up one or two more of these Nina Simone compilations, making sure that feature recordings from different labels, and then see what period of her long recording career you enjoy best and go on from there.

By the way, you made my day knowing that there is now another Nina Simone fan in the world.

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Beyonce?

I did not know she could sing.

Really.

Jazz vocalist is a difficult concept for me. It feels relatively easy for me to recognize a jazz instrumentalist, even in comparing improvisational rock bands like Phish or the Dead to jazz musicians.

But it is more difficult for me to make the same distinction for vocalists. Ella makes it easy, she scats! Seriously, she and Pops use their voices as improvisational instruments, so that is easy for my little grey cells to categorize.

But I think of the great Nina Simone as a blues artist. Same with Billie, though less so with her. So for me a large part of the problem is that I have difficulty categorizing many singers as jazz singers.

Sounds like a personal problem!

Trey

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It's all GOOD!!
Drtrey3 wrote:

I did not know she could sing.

Really.

Jazz vocalist is a difficult concept for me. It feels relatively easy for me to recognize a jazz instrumentalist, even in comparing improvisational rock bands like Phish or the Dead to jazz musicians.

But it is more difficult for me to make the same distinction for vocalists. Ella makes it easy, she scats! Seriously, she and Pops use their voices as improvisational instruments, so that is easy for my little grey cells to categorize.

But I think of the great Nina Simone as a blues artist. Same with Billie, though less so with her. So for me a large part of the problem is that I have difficulty categorizing many singers as jazz singers.

Sounds like a personal problem!

Trey

You're not that far off since jazz and blues are closely related with just the matter of rhythm separating them (of course this a very basic assessment). In its most basic form jazz uses "blue notes" coupled with a swinging 4/4 beat and sounds very close to the blues. Plus there are many jazz artists who often play music which is closer to the blues than it is to jazz. Billie Holiday was both a first rate blues and jazz singer but first and foremost she was a jazz singer. Nina Simone was very similar but a solid jazz singer nonetheless.

The waters get even muddier when one considers singers like Diana Krall whose singing style often places them closer to "chanson" and cabaret singing than jazz. And to really make a mess of things there are the jazz like phrasing of bossa nova singers such as Astrud Gilberto.

When things get this confusing I just follow the sage advice of American artist Harry Holtzman who said "Hardening of the categories leads to art disease" and the great Duke Ellington who said that there are only two kinds of music: good and bad.

It really doesn't matter what Billie or Nina is singing 'cause it's all good!

Unfortunately I can not say the same for Beyonce since it often sounds like she is more interested in making lots of money rather making good art and music. Too bad since she's quite capable of making good music when she wants to.

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Well said Jazzfan

I heard that quote arrtibuted to Leonard Bernstein. I hope that the Duke really said it!

I had never thought about using scales to differentiate jazz and blues singers, but it makes perfect sense to me. Flated 5th = jazz, more or less. 8)

Trey

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Blossom Dearie probably

wasn't the best, but she sure was damn cute.

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Kat Edmonson

very similiar to Blossom Dearie, and she can sing as well! :-)

RG

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Diana Krall.

Diana Krall.

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Reading?
Allen Fant wrote:

Diana Krall.

See post #3:

"Great names so far.

May I add:

Diana Krall & Carol Kidd

My vote for best all time has to be Ella"

Sometimes actually reading the previous posts can be useful.

Prediction: the next post will name Ella Fitzgerald.

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Janet Planet?

Just brought back memories of listening to her at Clearwater Harbor in Waupaca, WI in the early 1980s.

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Which Janet Planet?
jackfish wrote:

Just brought back memories of listening to her at Clearwater Harbor in Waupaca, WI in the early 1980s.

I take it that the Janet Planet you're referring to is not the Janet Planet who was once married to Van Morrison?

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Janet Planet not Janet Rigsbee
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Same Girl

I came this post in Fred Kaplan's Stereophile jazz blog

http://forum.stereophile.com/content/youn-sun-nahs-isame-girli

and decided to give Youn Sun Nah a listen. I was not disappointed. "Same Girl" is a very listenable recording which for the most part teases the boundary of jazz/pop singing. Worth a listen.

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Same Girl

Where does Fred fine these jewels . Youn is a little different from the norm , but excellent , very well recorded too .

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  For awhile now I've

 

For awhile now I've been partial to Lyambiko.  She has an excellent trio and the German recordings are topshelf, IMHO of course.

Out of this Mood or her Nina Simone trubute are a good place to start.

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Far too many greats, to name

Far too many greats, to name 1 best.

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Some recent ones to consider

I am unsure if any of these would be considered the greatest, but here are some recent (modern) female vocalist I enjoy.

 

Norah Jones, she is jazzy at times :P

Melody Gardot

Madeleine Peyroux

Jill Barber, been listening to her alot lately.

 

Personaly though for me the greatest has always been Billie Holiday.

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More important names

Hi all!

Nice reading your various lists and comments. As a life-long jazz singing fan, I was inspired by many of the above-mentioned vocalists, and have heard most of the others with pleasure. That said, I believe one needs to add a few extremely important names to the development of the idiom, who are alive, well, and performing at the highest of jazz, beauty and artistic honesty:

Sheila Jordan, Jay Clayton, Judy Niemack, Nancy Wilson, Maucha Adnet, Roberta Flack, Leni Andrade to name but a few

Among the recently departed, I would add Jeanne Lee, Shirley Horn and Monica Zetterlund

In the younger generation: Esperanza Spalding, Lisa Werlinder come to mind

If you haven't heard them yet, you're in for hours of joy! Have a good listening.

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Considered

Good choices Jabberwock , Melody Gardot is my current favourite . I'm surprized someone didn't throw her name into the hoop sooner . I'm also a fan of Norah Jones and Madeleine Peyroux , but your fourth choice Jill Barber is new to me  , now you've got me going , can you or someone recommend a first disc for a newbe .

                                                                                                                                                                 Thanks  Tim

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Chances
tmsorosk wrote:

Good choices Jabberwock , Melody Gardot is my current favourite . I'm surprized someone didn't throw her name into the hoop sooner . I'm also a fan of Norah Jones and Madeleine Peyroux , but your fourth choice Jill Barber is new to me  , now you've got me going , can you or someone recommend a first disc for a newbe .

                                                                                                                                                                 Thanks  Tim

 

Sorry for the late reply, I don't get a chance to browse the forums as much as I would like.

I would recommend her latest two albums Chances and Mischievous Moon, they are more on the Jazzy side, her earlier work is more folk rock.

Hope you enjoy!

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Candye Kane - Swango - 1998

 

Candye Kane - Swango - 1998

 Have you ever seen her before?

 

 

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Candye Kane

Soulful  ,  No I have not seen or heard of her before. Are there any links to her music? 

Tierney Sutton,  On The Other Side, ( Telarc SACD-63650 )  is one we've cozied up to in resent weeks, it's very mellow but very engaging.

Holly Cole, Volume One is also worth it's weight in gold for anyone that doesn't already own it. This is one that sounds a tat better on CD than vinyl.

                                                                                                                                       Tim

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Just Say No........to porn
tmsorosk wrote:

Soulful  ,  No I have not seen or heard of her before. Are there any links to her music? 

Tierney Sutton,  On The Other Side, ( Telarc SACD-63650 )  is one we've cozied up to in resent weeks, it's very mellow but very engaging.

Holly Cole, Volume One is also worth it's weight in gold for anyone that doesn't already own it. This is one that sounds a tat better on CD than vinyl.

                                                                                                                                       Tim

Tim, I am a huge fan of Holly Cole (thanks to Jonathan Scull). Got the Don't Smoke In Bed Cd, great stuff! very throaty vocals. I will have to check out Tierney Sutton.

Tim, I been looking around and can't find any samples of Candye to listen to, but here's vid from YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfSSO5LTtZc&feature=related

 

I was being cheeky when I asked "Have you ever seen her before"

She just happens to be an ex-porn actress and big boob magazine queen of the late 70's and 80's. lol! ;-)

I mean, the woman has that gritty, blues sound. you know? At any rate, it's always great to see people eventually make it like Candye that grew up in a tough situation.

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Modern day divas

My list of divas are Melody Gardot, Patricia Barber, Madelaine Peyroux, Diana Krall.  I am surprised that no one mentions Dianne Reeves.  Cassandra Wilson has a few winners, most recent ones include "My Love and I" (Charlie Haden Quartet West's Sophisticated Ladies).    Up and comers include Telarc's Melissa Morgan.  Her "I just drop by to say hello" is simply sensational.  Jamie Paul has a very unique voice.  She can be someone to look out for in the futre.  Across the pond, you can listen to Claire Martin.  Her song is available for download at the naim site.  Try her "Too Darn Hot".  The dynamic range of the song is very similar to Patricia Barber.  Also available at naim is Sabina Siubba pairing with guitarist Antonio Forcione.  Her "Estaté" is also very similar to Patricia Baber too.

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The Absolute Best

 

 

The Greatest Female Jazz singer on the planet.

...and best dressed too.

 

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Killing a thread

Nice way to kill an otherwise worthwhile thread.

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only joking.
jazzfan wrote:

Nice way to kill an otherwise worthwhile thread.

 I wasn't trying to 'kill' the thread. It was simply a joke. Anybody with any knowledge of Jazz should know I wasn't serious with the talentless Lady Gaga in her infamous 'meat suit'. So, lighten up and laugh a little my friend.

 

Here's a serious entry:

Jo Stafford from the 1950's. Remember her rendition of Blue Moon?.

 

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Shocking

Actually, I've been quite surprized at how many older music lovers seem to like Lady Gag, not sure why. 

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torture

 

It's beyond me Tim of why some older music lovers would like this bubblegum pop. Gag's so-called music sounds like a bunch of pre-processed computer bleeps and blops. She needs to personally write a huge royalty check to the inventor of auto-tune IMHO.

If given the dilema between having to listen to her 'music' or to be waterboarded. I would chose the latter.wink

Mark

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ha ha ha
soulful.terrain wrote:
jazzfan wrote:

Nice way to kill an otherwise worthwhile thread.

I wasn't trying to 'kill' the thread. It was simply a joke. Anybody with any knowledge of Jazz should know I wasn't serious with the talentless Lady Gaga in her infamous 'meat suit'. So, lighten up and laugh a little my friend.

Okay now I understand. Ha Ha!

The funny thing is that beneath all that meat and glitz Lady Gaga does a fair amount of talent. She can play piano (I know so can millions of other people) and sing without auto-tunes. What will be interesting is to watch what happens once her music is no longer considered cutting edge. Will she end up like Madonna unsuccessfully trying too hard to chase the zeitgeist or will she use her talents to build a career that doesn't depend on being number one.

And nobody, absolutely nobody will ever top Bjork's academy awards swan suit.

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.
jazzfan wrote:
soulful.terrain wrote:
jazzfan wrote:

Nice way to kill an otherwise worthwhile thread.

I wasn't trying to 'kill' the thread. It was simply a joke. Anybody with any knowledge of Jazz should know I wasn't serious with the talentless Lady Gaga in her infamous 'meat suit'. So, lighten up and laugh a little my friend.

Okay now I understand. Ha Ha!

The funny thing is that beneath all that meat and glitz Lady Gaga does a fair amount of talent. She can play piano (I know so can millions of other people) and sing without auto-tunes. What will be interesting is to watch what happens once her music is no longer considered cutting edge. Will she end up like Madonna unsuccessfully trying too hard to chase the zeitgeist or will she use her talents to build a career that doesn't depend on being number one.

And nobody, absolutely nobody will ever top Bjork's academy awards swan suit.

Oh yeah..I forgot about that swan suit Bjork wore. lol!

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Bjork

Bjork is a great vocalist, I used to listen to allot of her music. And what a sweetheart, saw a video of her attacking a female photographer for no apparent reason, yeah down on the ground kicking pulling hair and such.  ( kind of reminds me of my ex )

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violent swans
tmsorosk wrote:

Bjork is a great vocalist, I used to listen to allot of her music. And what a sweetheart, saw a video of her attacking a female photographer for no apparent reason, yeah down on the ground kicking pulling hair and such.  ( kind of reminds me of my ex )

Tim, I hear ya on the ex thing.. lol!  My ex may have been related to yours.

Now if we can get Bjork to kick some ass while wearing that swan suit. That would be worth a grammy in itself..

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I like Diana Krall.  Mark,

I like Diana Krall.  Mark, tell me the gear/components of your current system.

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What's up Allen
Allen Fant wrote:

I like Diana Krall.  Mark, tell me the gear/components of your current system.

Hey there Allen. Currently I am using my ML - 31/30 combo on the digital front end, the same ML 38 pre driving a pair of Classe' CA M600 monos which are driving my EW Andra II's. The reviews are true, the more power you feed the Andra's the more they disappear. I certainly will not be parting with these amps for a very long time, they are perfect for these speakers, I love  em!! ;-)  I still have the same Audioprism II power conditioner which is a keeper. Probably the best powerline protection I have ever owned, very simple, no bells and whistles.

Sold the Genesis digital lens, and hopefully I can get rid of my Wadia 8 transport for a decent price. Thinking about going with an MBL Transport, I was really impressed with them in Atlanta at the Axpona show.

Almost forgot, I demo'd the dCS Scarlatti combo paired with the Thiel 3.6's at a friends house up here. WoW! amazing resolution, probably the best cd player/dac combo I have ever heard in my life!, but at 19 grand for the used combo, SHEESH! Nevertheless, amazing digital gear!

I love Diana Krall. And I bet Elvis Costello does too!  lucky s.o.b. ;-)

Are they still married? haven't been keeping up.

talk later,

Mark

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Many Thanks! Mark. It has

Many Thanks! Mark. It has been awhile since our last correspondence.

I see you finally bought the Classe' mono blocks - very fine products there.

Recently, I had an opportunity to demo the Thiel CS2.4 speakers and really liked the sound, the retailer did not have enough power on them, so I could not gauge their true ability. The is another retailer in Atlanta where I could get a better demo.

 

Have you found any retail shops there in Tenn?

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.
Allen Fant wrote:

Have you found any retail shops there in Tenn?

No I haven't. I really don't have much time to look to be quite honest. There is a Hi-Fi Buys in Nashville. I don't really like dealing with them. The intelligence level of their salesmen are on par with Best Buy imho.

What gear are you using at the moment?

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Still traveling around and

Still traveling around and demoing gear, my man.

 

I recently returned from a business trip to Baltimore - pretty good retailers in that area.

There were 2 in the D.C area, that I wanted to scope out  -I will visit those guys next time.

 

Next week, I will be heading off to North Carolina and have 2 shops that i want to visit.

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.
Allen Fant wrote:

Still traveling around and demoing gear, my man.

 

I recently returned from a business trip to Baltimore - pretty good retailers in that area.

There were 2 in the D.C area, that I wanted to scope out  -I will visit those guys next time.

 

Next week, I will be heading off to North Carolina and have 2 shops that i want to visit.

 

Sounds good Allen. Sounds like you have my schedule ;-) Let me know if you if you aquire anything.

Mark

tmsorosk
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Last seen: 17 min 30 sec ago
Joined: Dec 5 2010 - 12:34pm
Norah

  We were just reacquainting ourselves with Norah Jones , Come Away with Me. Haven't listened to it for awhile, she's an acquired taste but if your in the right mood she can bring you home.

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