Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox

The Essentials II
(Concord)

Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox continues the vocal fun with a compilation of 18 additional era-melding mash-ups.

Known for their feel-good weekly viral videos, Bradlee and his extensive cast of star vocalists from reality TV shows American Idol, The Voice and America’s Got Talent are lent assistance by a few well-known international and American celebrities for The Essentials II. Talented pianist, producer and arranger Bradlee fuses modern pop, hip-hop, rock and metal chart-toppers with vintage genres, including 1920s toe-tapping jazz, 1930s torch songs, carefree classics from the 1950s, doo-wop and Motown. With his gift for arranging and presenting popular contemporary music, jazz is given a more accessible veneer, one that might entice mainstream audiences. So, hats off to Bradlee for revisiting the blissful sounds of vintage American music in celebratory fashion.

The powerhouse soulful swinging of The Voice’s Maiya Sykes on Notorious B.I.G.’s “Juicy” is an uplifting and stellar jazz standout. “What Is Love” spotlights American Idol’s charismatic Casey Abrams, kicking up a vibe drawn from the 1950s and ’60s with a heartfelt delivery. High-energy upbeat performances from Holland’s Jennie Lena and Sweden’s Gunhild Carling heighten the retro-party mood.

Melinda Doolittle’s take on “Toxic” is enticing as vampy ’30s torch jazz. And soaring vocal highs from Haley Reinhart peak melodiously on Bradlee’s exquisitely arranged opener, Soundgarden’s “Black Hole Sun.” Postmodern Jukebox’s viral mash-up cover of “All About That Bass” features Bradlee’s catchy jazz arranging and a 1920s flashback in perfect form with a polished sassy collective.

Winding down with his star-studded line-up, Bradlee closes with an on-the-rise talent, 15-year-old Caroline Baran, driving Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters,” perhaps fostering the next generation of star performers.



On Sale Now
June 2019
Jeremy Pelt
Look Inside
Subscribe
Print | Digital | iPad