08 Elizabeth ShepherdThree Things
Elizabeth Shepherd; Jasper Holby; Michael Occhipinti et al
Pinwheel Music PM106CD (elizabethshepherd.com)

Looking for the perfect mix of tunes to accompany these beautiful summer nights? Velvet-voiced vocalist and pianist Elizabeth Shepherd brings a perfect hodgepodge of mellow grooves and feistier melodies on her latest release. Those who have followed Shepherd’s musical journey throughout her various albums know that she is a genre-traveller, bringing a little bit of a different theme to each record. This one takes a foray into the slightly more “religious” aspect of music, depicting “a personal faith that uses music to look beyond oneself, to express gratitude, and to connect — with the divine and with others.” These tunes were born in the depths of the pandemic and provided ample time for self-reflection, which is why the repertoire is inspired by the journey of looking deep into oneself and finding the music within. 

The record features innovativeness through the use of sampling and modernistic melodies, and a hint of Shepherd’s trademark funk-jazz-soul sound through the use of rhythmic bass lines and drum riffs, a perfect example of this combo being the track Time. Further, what leaves an impression on the listener is how each musician’s unique style of playing both shines on its own and blends together seamlessly, with most songs being recorded separately due to restrictions during the pandemic. The result is what Shepherd lovingly deems “a Frankenstein album that’s very different from what I’ve done before.” A great album for the funk and modern jazz lover. 

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