01.25.17new EP download CITY STORIES available today!
The new EP- length download album, CITY STORIES, releases today and is available on iTunes, Apple Music, CD Baby, and amazon.com.
"Less an afterthought to Imaginary Release, City Stories is a project inspired by a separate muse, one focusing on New York City. Recorded during the same sessions as Imaginary Release, City Stories exists as a unique palette-cleanser allowing Devins arrange effectively a suite to her home base. "Sidewalk Waltz" is a frantic original by Devins, delivered at the staccato rate of the city. Tom Christensen's muscular tenor recalls Michael Breckerr on a tear. Rainone's "Wayward Soul" captures the fatigue of the city, stopping to rest. Devins' voice is cushioned by the horns. Jobim's "This Happy Madness" and Bob Dorough's "Devil May Care" frame the expansiveness of the city. Think of City Stories as the fine cognac...heady and sharp"
- C Michael Bailey, All About Jazz
01.12.17New Review on All About Jazz for ImIMAGINARY RELEASE and CITY STORIES (releasing Jan 26)
C. Michael Bailey on All About Jazz just wrote a wonderful review of both album projects.
The second EP-length release, CITY STORIES, will be available January 26.
Dorian Devins Hits A Double In The Bleak Midwinter
Rain1 Jazz 2016
New York centered jazz singer and lyricist Dorian Devins first rocked my sensitive Southern Consciousness in 2013 with the release of The Procrastinator (Rain1 Jazz). Devins marked a return to that jazz step-child, vocalese: the application of lyrics to well-known wordless jazz compositions. The recording was a cornerstone of that year. Devins played a very large part on The Lou Rainone Quintet +1\'s Skydance singing two of her compositions (Rain1jazz, 2015). Here on the fulcrum between then and now, Devins releases CD and EP, Imaginary Release and City Stories, back to back, much to our delight.
Dorian Devins has a genuine knack for intelligent and thoughtful programming for her projects. The Procrastinator focused intensely on vocalese, others and her own. While bringing a remnant of vocalese to Imaginary Release, Devins expands her creative reach to include some classical hybridization and a nod to the age of Classic Rock. A cheeky allusion to the fact that this release will be available only in a digital format, Imaginary Release shows both creative and performance growth on the part of Devins. The singer adapts two Eric Satie melodies for the medium tempo \"Lament for the Moon\" and the Eastern-slanted \"Satie-ated,\" both with the harmonic help of husband/pianist Lou Raineone. Devins extends this Eastern motif into Traffic\'s \"Hidden Treasures.\" She does a straight vocalese on the Ellington/Lee classic, \"I\'m Gonna Go Fishin\'\" where her performance is tart, precise, and swinging. Devins\' phrasing presently has no peer. The singer penned words for Wayne Shorter\'s \"Conundrum,\" making a slick Latin piece punctuated by Rainone\'s fine piano interludes. Her straight jazz here is formidable. Leonard Bernstein\'s \"Some Other Time\" is delicately arranged by Rainone and sung by Devins, displaying her potent alto voice. Benny Goodman\'s \"Lullaby in Rhythm\" is freshened up considerably, and features Richie Vitale\'s sharp trumpet playing and Tom Christensen\'s woody reeds. The surprise center of the recording is Tim Hardin\'s \"Misty Roses,\" transformed by Rainone and Devins into a light samba featuring bassist Tom Hubbard. Devins continues to prove to be exception in concept and execution.
Rain1 Jazz 2017
Less an afterthought to Imaginary Release, City Stories is a project inspired by a separate muse, one focusing on New York City. Recorded during the same sessions as Imaginary Release, City Stories exists as a unique palette-cleanser allowing Devins arrange effectively a suite to her home base. \"Sidewalk Waltz\" is a frantic original by Devins, delivered at the staccato rate of the city. Tom Christensen\'s muscular tenor recalls Michael Breckerr on a tear. Rainone\'s \"Wayward Soul\" captures the fatigue of the city, stopping to rest. Devins\' voice is cushioned by the horns. Jobim\'s \"This Happy Madness\" and Bob Dorough\'s \"Devil May Care\" frame the expansiveness of the city. Think of City Stories as the fine cognac...heady and sharp.
You can also read the review in its entirety by clicking the link here
12.04.16NEW ALBUM IS NOW OUT & AVAILABLE!!
The New album, Imaginary Release, is now out and available for download on iTunes, Amazon. Com, and CD Baby!!
You can download the album or selected tracks.
NYC Jazz Vocalist / Lyricists Dorian Devins’s new recording IMAGINARY RELEASE (Rain1Jazz, LJR-05) celebrates escape, imagination, and dreams
Dorian Devins has been referred to as an “enigimatically witty, erudite jazz chanteuse/songwriter" and “a singer who ‘gets it’" Her previous release, The Procrastinator (Rain1Jazz), garnered positive reviews and was selected as a “Best Recording of 2013" by C. Michael Bailey at All About Jazz, and
With her new release, IMAGINARY RELEASE (available as download on iTunes, Amazon.com and CD Baby), Devins is back with an eclectic mix of tunes, both original and cover, which deal with themes of imagination, escape, and dreams. Amongst them are big band swing standard Lullaby in Rhythm and The Moon Looks Down and Laughs, a song most notably recorded by Billie Holiday. The sassy Duke Ellington/ Peggy Lee song, I’m Gonna Go Fishin’ brings a different kind of attitude to the theme. Bossa nova is represented by both the beautiful Jobim/ Oliviera song So Tinha de Ser Com Voce and pop-folk songwriter Tim Hardin’s Misty Roses. The lone ballad here is Betty Comden, Adolphe Green and Oscar Hammerstein II’s Some Other Time, which features some gorgeous instrumental solo work. Hidden Treasure is a cover of the song by the 60’s/70’s band Traffic. It’s done in a style that manages to be jazz while remaining true to the original. The remaining songs all have original lyrics by Devins, and in two cases, Satie-ated and Lament for the Moon, are arrangements based on music by Erik Satie.
Conundrum is the second cowriting credit for Devins with Wayne Shorter. Based on his instrumental Rio, Conundrum deals with philosophical/ existential themes. On Resolution, Devins’ third recorded collaboration with her husband/pianist Lou Rainone, she takes Rainone’s driving composition
and layers her dreamscape words over it. On Satie-ated, her lyrics deal with an increasingly troubling world where truth and peace are under siege. And Lament for the Moon is a lullaby of sorts, in which the romance of a simple and life, represented by moon, is sought.
The musicians on IMAGINARY RELEASE represent a who’s who of great New York City-area players. Tom Christensen is best known as a tenor player. Here he displays his talents on that instrument, as well as flute, oboe, and English Horn. Richie Vitale, who recorded with Devins previously, brings his great trumpet and flugelhorn sound. Lou Rainone is an in-demand pianist and composer and regular recording and performing collaborator with Devins, as are both Paul Gill and Tom Hubbard, the two bassists (from 2 recording dates). And Taro Okamoto, another frequent collaborator, brings his great drum chops
12.04.16Promo for 12/5 Bar Next Door gig & belated Procrastinator review
\"Singer Dorian Devins occupies a pretty unique place in jazz. She doesn’t just sing standards and the occasional obscurity: she reinvents instrumental numbers from across the years by penning her own pensive, tersely crafted, often subtly amusing lyrics. She sings in a cool, unadorned mezzo-soprano that harks back to golden age songbirds from June Christy to Peggy Lee, and like those singers, works the subtlest corners of her repertoire. For the past few years, she’s led a succession of trios and quartets and the occasional larger ensemble, gigging constantly from the West Village all the way out to deep Queens. Her latest album is titled The Procrastinator, parts of which are up at her webpage and at her youtube channel. Her next gig is out in front of a trio with her longtime pianist Lou Rainone and bassist Paul Gill at the Bar Next Door on Dec 5, with sets at 8:30 and 10:30 PM. Cover is $12.
The album’s opening number, Let’s Get Lost benefits from Devins’ low-key, enigmatic delivery – Karrin Allyson might have remade it this way. It’s about getting really lost, not just half-lost. Devins’ interpretation is a perfect match for the lyrics: “Let’s defrost, in this romantic mist." Richie Vitale takes an animated, brightly toned trumpet solo followed by a bustling piano solo from Rainone.
A plush, balmy take of Wayne Shorter’s Deluge – retitled as Momentum – is next. Peter Brainin’s wary soprano sax adds welcome acidity, Rainone’s gracefully bluesy rainy-day lines matching the gritty mood. Kenny Dorham’s La Mesha gets an opiated, wary vocal echoed by a long, resonant, judicious Vitale solo, Rainone and the rest of the rhythm section – bassist Karl Kaminski and drummer Steve Johns – taking it into more jaunty territory.
I Guess I’ll Hang My Tears Out to Dry, done here with equal parts steadiness and Rainone’s wee-hours glimmer, is a great choice of cover: Devins loves the surreal, and her deadpan approach to this one fits it to a T. Bob Dorough’s Better Than Anything, a jazz waltz, gets an unexpectedly emphatic treatment, and the ordinarily low-key Devins pulls it off, Brainin’s flute hovering in a Frank Wess vein, Rainone reaching an unexpected crescendo with his volleys of triplets.
The album’s title track, a Lee Morgan tune, gets reinvented with a neat intro where Kaminski shadows Devins’ wry 99-percenter lament, which she picks up with deft flights of chromatics. She invents Kurt Weill’s Speak Low as a nocturnal samba; Vitale’s sunny flugelhorn adds vivid contrast with Rainone’s darkly majestic, chromatically-charged attack. Likewise, Devins does Night Bird as tiptoeing, late-night swing, much more darkly than the famous Anita O’Day version, Vitale adding distant, steady unease. Devins’ devious little curlicue on the final “I still fly by night" is priceless.
Devins takes another Lee Morgan tune, Lament for Stacy, back in a grim St. James Infirmary direction, with a brooding bass solo. The final Lee Morgan number, Soft Touch. gets a surprising amount of oomph from Devins…and then she switches it up from a jazz waltz to flute-infused, latin-tinged swing.
Dreamer, better known as the Jobim tune Vivo Sonhando, has a hazy wistfulness and distant echoes of LA lowrider soul. The album closes with Time Was, best known as a Coltrane tune; Devins’ take gets a fondly nostalgic treatment, her calm delivery in contrast to the rhythm section, who are pretty much jumping out of their shoes.
Since this album came out in 2012, Devins reputedly has another on the way soon – maybe it’s time this blog was rebranded as The Procrastinator. Fun fact: Devins is not only a musician but also co-founder of New York’s Secret Science Club, a popular series that began as a WNYC program and predated the TED Talks by several years, covering all sorts of developments in technology, medicine and many other fields that will impact our lives in the near future.\"
11.22.15great review of Sky Dance, Lou Rainone\'s new CD (featuring my vocals and lyrics0
There's a great review of Sky Dance, Lou Rainone's new CD which features my lyrics and singing on two tunes.
A Lyrical, Latin-Tinged New Quintet Album from Pianist Lou Rainone
Pianist Lou Rainone keeps a busy schedule in the New York scene, playing regularly with the master of polytonal sax, George Braith and also with intriguingly enigmatic chanteuse Dorian Devins, among others. As a composer, he likes latin rhythms and mines a melodic postbop style; in the same vein as Brad Mehldau, he hangs out mostly in the piano’s midrange. Rainone’s latest album, Sky Dance is just out, and not yet up at the usual places online yet, although the clips up at cdbaby offer a hint of the unselfconsciously glimmering melodicism and postbop chops that characterize his work. Most of the tracks feature a quintet with trombonist Larry Farrell, trumpeter Richie Vitale, bassist Tom Dicarlo and drummer Taro Okamoto. Rainone leads this ensemble on November 29 at 9 PM at the Fat Cat.
The title track, with its shuffling, latin-tinged groove opens the album on a catchy, vintage Frank Foster-ish note; Dicarlo bubbles and percolates and the rest of the band follows in turn, spaciously. Rainone anchoring it with an artful staccato that alludes to a bustling milieu more than it actually depicts one. Little Dipper the first of the jazz waltzes here, creates a similarly lingering, distantly wistful atmosphere, everyone choosing their spots. Sweet Tooth, a trio piece with the rhythm section, brings back the shuffling latin inflections and adds wry wit, Dicarlo echoing the composer’s sardonic, Monk-ish figures.
The clave rhythm moves closer to centerstage in Aqua, Rainone’s majestic, ringing chords leading up to a carbonated Vitale solo, Farrell adding splashes of cool. A Late Arrival works slow, woundedly muted terrain, with hints of Asian tonalities and a rainswept gleam that slowly brightens; Rainone and the horns take it out on a lustrous note.
Devins’ vividly wintry vocals are a quiet knockout in Shifting, another jazz waltz, Dicarlo’s darkly dancing solo at the center. Cross Current brings back the bustling energy that opens the album; with Farrell’s purposeful solo, it’s the most straight-up swing tune here. Fly Away, a trio piece and the last of the jazz waltzes, is Rainone’s most expansive number. Devins takes the bandstand again on Time Is a Friend, her subtle gallows humor set to an irrepressible clave beat over Rainone’s judicious chords and Farrell’s similarly considered lines. The album ends with Rsvp, a lively, solo-centric swing shuffle and a synthesis of pretty much everything on this album. Rainone is a guy who should be vastly better known as a bandleader and this album should go a long way toward further establishing that.
09.05.15Sky Dance now available!
I am proud to be a part of a the Lou Rainone Quintet +1 (I am the +1) and on the newly-released and great CD, SKY DANCE!
You can check out excerpts of the 2 tunes I'm on, which you can hear excerpts of here on my website. I wrote the lyrics as well as sing on these two. Lou wrote the music for these and all of the music on the CD, as well as arranging them all.
The rest of the CD is amazing as well! Check it out on CD Baby on the link below.It's available through CD baby, iTunes, and Amazon.
12.16.13The Procrastinator makes "Best Recordings of 2013" list on All About Jazz!
The Procrastinator has been listed on C. Michael Bailey's "Best Recordings of 2013" on All About Jazz, published online on Dec. 11.
07.06.13My new Art Blog - the Procrastin-arter!
If you're traveling around the webworld, please stop by my new blog, The Procrastin-arter! It features some of my doodles etc.,
03.24.13Another great review for The Procrastinator
by George Fendel, Oregon Jazz Society (March)
The Procrastinator; Dorian Devins, vocals.
It’s simply a case of you know it when you hear it. Bless ‘em all for contributing and trying, but I see perhaps as many as a dozen female singers per month, all hoping for reviews and/ or airplay. Some are strikingly good, most are wanna be’s, and once in a while, I encounter a “she-gets-it" jazz singer with a cooking ensemble backing her. Such a singer is Devins. All you’d have to do is look at her tune list and you’d think “there must be something good going on here." Consider “under exposed" titles such as Wayne Shorter"s “Momentum"; Kenny Dorham’s beautiful “La Mesha"; and no less than three obscurities by Lee Morgan -- “Lament For Stacy," “Soft Touch" and the title tune. To these, add a few very well-chosen standards in “Let’s Get Lost," “I Guess I’ll Hang My Tears Out to Dry", “Better Than Anything," “Speak Low" and an old big band chestnut, “Time W,a." To round out the program, toss in Al Cohn’s “Nightbird" and a Jobim beauty, “Dreamer." If all this doesn’t entice you, please understand that Devins works seaamlessly with a spot-on New York quintet featuring the under-rated but simply outstanding trumpet-flugelhorn ace Richie Vitale. There’s no frosting on the cake with this singer. And that’s the way it usually is with the best. They never need to depend on gimmicks, show biz or shmaltz. Devins interprets these songs straight down the middle of the highway. And there’re no detours.
Rain Jazz; 2012; appx. 65 minutes.
I now have a page up on Soundcloud where you can check out some tunes from the The Procrastinator.
Have a listen!!
07.18.12CD Baby Store
You can purchase some loose singles from th CD Baby artist page. The CD will be there available in late July.