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Tara Darnell - Let It Shine
     

The city of New Orleans doesn’t just shape great singers and musicians; the place is so musical it seems to begin the training of young native talent even in the womb.

Take the case of Tara Darnell. While still a toddler, the youngster would amuse friends and family by mounting performances anywhere and everywhere, using anything handy, a jump-rope handle or an inverted screwdriver, as her make-believe microphone.

Today, there’s no more needing to make believe for Tara Darnell; one listen to this powerhouse debut recording and it becomes instantly clear, this girl was born to sing!

Dynamic and forceful only begin to describe her gospel-forged style, and proving she’s no shrinking violet, this thrilling vocalist has chosen to open her debut recording with a composition all her own, “Let It Shine,” professing her faith and commitment in a full-blown, no-holds-barred gospel arrangement.

More-intimate settings on a half-dozen jazz standards follow (“God Bless the Child,” “All of Me,” “Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans?” and “Summertime” among the standouts), before transitioning to funk-drive back-up on a couple of R&B sizzlers (“The Thrill Is Gone” and “Ain’t No Sunshine”).

The program closes with the singer’s self-penned tribute to her daughter, “I’ll Be Here for You (Tierra’s Song)”, and a stunning solo and piano rendition of “Amazing Grace,” before exiting with a rocking “Gospel Medley” of old-time spirituals that both recalls the great Mahalia Jackson, the original gospel queen of New Orleans, and reaffirms Tara Darnell’s roots in church-based music and spirit-driven musical inspiration.

It’s a perfect ending to a stunning, sizzling, and spiritually infused debut performance.

   

LET IT SHINE

GOD BLESS THE CHILD

ALL OF ME

DO YOU KNOW WHAT IT MEANS TO MISS NEW ORLEANS

THAT’S ALL

SUMMERTIME

BIRTH OF THE BLUES

THE THRILL IS GONE

AIN’T NO SUNSHINE

I’LL BE HERE FOR YOU (TIERRA’S SONG)

AMAZING GRACE

GOSPEL MEDLEY

 

   

 

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