Sarah McKenzie

Secrets Of My Heart
(Normandy Lane)

Born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, a former Berklee student, and a resident at times of Paris and London, Sarah McKenzie has developed into a talented pianist, vocalist and songwriter.

As a singer, McKenzie has a light, airy voice that’s slightly reminiscent of Peggy Lee. And on Secrets Of My Heart, she shows that she’s flexible enough to credibly interpret a slow, solo version of “You Must Believe In Spring,” as well as Dinah Washington’s bluesy “Come On Home.”

Her singing and playing are enjoyable enough, but McKenzie’s main significance in the long run could be her songwriting. While “De Nada” is perhaps too close for comfort to Jobim’s “So Danço Samba,” “You And The Music” is a happy love song, “My True Love Is You” is a memorable medium-slow ballad, she sings the speedy lyrics of the bossa “Till The End Of Time” effortlessly, and the title track, with its effective melody and slightly downbeat message, could catch on with others in the future.

The diverse, but unified, program, which also includes the offbeat opener “You Only Live Twice” (from the James Bond movie) and an instrumental four-song Gershwin medley, is sprinkled with welcome solos by guitarist Dan Wilson and tenor saxophonist Troy Roberts that accentuate McKenzie’s warm vocals.

On Sale Now
February 2023
Lakecia Benjamin
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