It has always been a dream of mine to write and record a collection of songs that combine lyrics more like poetry with rich harmonic language – something like, or exactly like “art song," -- songs that expand the harmonic language of jazz and/or the classic American songbook. Drawing from both jazz and classical harmony, these songs expand the frontier of songwriting. They are rich enough in harmony, melody, lyrics for classical singers' high standards and jazz singers can sing them while giving their instrumentalists a rich harmonic landscape to explore.
This dream is now evolving into reality. In 2015 I had the honor of performing my latest song cycle "Angels, Birds and I...." and more of my songs at the Harris Theater in Chicago with the incomparable Renée Fleming. We also did concerts in NY and Washington D.C. together. In 2016 Renée sang my songs at a Carnegie Hall recital and at other venues.
Now it is time to continue the journey into jazz and artsong (I have rewritten the word) by writing and recording an entire album with this life changing event as a springboard into new creative songwriting territory. There will also be some special standards and instrumentals on the album. We hope to include one song sung by a young upcoming classical singer as well. Please join me as I document and share this very personal process with you through ArtistShare. (Patricia Barber)