Reviews

Harvey Thompson : “Jazz Is Anything You Want It to Be”
This splended recording from Detroit singer Harvey Thompson is far more than just a vocal showcase. The ingenuity of the arrangements, the stylistic breadth of the repertoire and the ebullience of the performances establish Thompson as a bandleader of unusual sensitivity and musical accomplishment. The tight vocal instrumental ensemble passages he leads in the title track, the idiomatic way he and the band handle the dance funk rhythms of Horace Silver’s ” The Show Has Begun ” and the clever way Thompson reinvents Cole Porter’s ” You ‘d Be So Nice to Come Home To ” make this an instantly appealing recording. As for Thompson’s vocal work, he sings with as much poetry as virtuosity and stands as a potentially major talent. by Howard Reich/Chicago Tribune
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“Love’s Just Funny That Way ”
Harvey Thompson’s lush baritone is a great asset to the Japanese Jazz community. His latest recording this year in Japan presents standards with freshness and verve. He knows that interpreting classics are best done with a lack of pretence. He unfurls these standards with clarity and confidence. Besides hitting all his notes with an unassuming potency. He draws the lines out with a deep sense of the overall flow of the melody. His band gives him excellent support, always in the right spot and never in the way. Their tight ensemble backing allows Thompson to add the internal pushes and pulls that draw out maximum value from each of the melodies. The phrasing is simply beautiful. The range is also appealingly balanced , with a great gracefulness of tempo. ” The Boulevard of Broken Dreams” sways with a slow, sultry motion, while ” Just One of Those Things” bounces forward with hip authority. ” Waltz For Debby ” is delivered with a lovely sense of time, drawing the words out over the 3/4 beat with longing and technique. The gratifying directness of every tune, they are all strong in their own way, reveals a wonderful interaction between all members of the band and a deep feeling for the essentials of jazz vocals. Hopefully he’s here in Japan to stay. / Michael Pronko / Jazz writer / The Japan Times
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Honors For Harvey, Jo and Comcast
We were happy to hear about Comcast receiving a Telly Award for programming excellence for its ” Detroit Jazz Jewels ” special, and an Emmy nomination as well ( the Emmy results may have been announced by the time this reaches print ). ” Detroit’s rich Jazz Jewels ” which was chosen from a huge number of entries for ” Telly consideration , focused on Detroit’s rich jazz history and featured concert performances by smooth stylist Harvey Thompson and the great singer / pianist Jo Thompson. ( Note : They are not related. ) In the audience cheering them on was none other than Aretha Franklin. The Telly Awards recognizes outstanding cable non network programs and commercials. George Booth, Comcast vice president, said he knew that ” Detroit Jazz Jewels ” was ” something special ” and expressed gratitude that ” this hard work is being acknowledged nationally .” Jo Thompson and Harvey Thompson are masters of their craft and both give Detroit ample reason to be proud . Any alcolades they receive are not enough . / by Steve Holsey / MICHIGAN CHRONICLE / Reflections
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KINGPIN of JAZZ / Detroit Free Press by Charlie Hunt
Singing – and the Bowling – are right up Harvey Thompson’s alley
Harvey Thompson could have two resumes. One would say he is Detroit’s premier jazz crooner . It would describe his cloquent baritone voice as dark , smooth and luxurious, comparable to Joe Williams and deeper than Billy Eckstine’s . the other would talk of strikes and spares. It would say he is one of Detroit’s hotter competitive bowlers with an average in the low 200 s , some perfect games and an 800 series . And it might mention that he owes his jazz career to bowling. In jazz circles , Thompson is more likely to talk about his singing idols Tony Bennett and Johnny Hartman than bowling . No wonder so many of his fans and fellow musicians don’t even know about his dual career track .
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Super Jazz Singer Harvey Thompson
We are happy for the opportunity to hear a top class jazz vocalist , Mr. Harvey Thompson , a native of Detroit, a city which is rich in jazz tradition and the birthplace of many famous jazz personalities. Harvey Thompson does the city honor with his contribution to the jazz legacy. He is a true ” torch bearer of American song ” as expressed in the Detroit Metro Times about his vast repertoire of ballads and jazz standards. His rich baritone voice inspired the Chicago Tribune to add more compliments about “the stylistic breadth of the repertoire and the sophistication of his performance.” Thompson brings a wealth of experience and professionalism to the stage, bringing the full persona of the male jazz vocalist to the audience. The Tribune adds, ” He sings with as much poetry as virtuosity with an ability to communicate a song’s elegance as well as an innate sense of improvisation and swing” . /by Howard Reich/ Chicago Tribune