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Rumbling Force: Pamela Reese Smith, “Live at the Redstone Room”
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2011-08-10 16:33:45

Pamela Reese SmithAs “This Masquerade” begins on her recently released live CD recorded at Davenport’s Redstone Room, Pamela Reese Smith’s voice emerges from the piano prelude of Manny Lopez III as a husky, tuneful whisper, growing louder and more intense from phrase to phrase. As she builds, she blends breathiness and fullness to create a wistful and passionate melody. Her use of a light, breathy tone establishes the mournful mood of the song, especially when singing the word “lost,” imparting confusion and hopelessness.

Her voice continues to soften and grow with the lyrics. When singing the phrase “this masquerade,” she starts quietly and then allows her voice to expand as she holds out the line –communicating strength, despair, and other feelings.

Throughout the album, Smith employs this effectively expressive technique, and her big voice creates a deep, encompassing sound. But at times she misses the pitch a little, and the heavy richness of her voice becomes a disadvantage.

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