Kelli Grant’s new Neo – Swing CD kicks off “swinging” with the title cut, an autobiography of her musical career. With original lyrics, 4 verses long (included) Kelli gives praise to her Mother's influence and gift of a signature piano style. Kelli plays a walking 4/4 or “swing” bass line with her left hand, a testament to her title, “the Queen of Swing” given to her by Mr. Action, Roy Moss & Carl “Blue Suede Shoes” Perkins”. However; the fun has just begun as a charismatic Swing version of "Goody, Goody" rivaling “The King of Swing” Benny Goodman's hit and Frankie Lymon’s 50’s chart topper, starts the ball rolling. No disappoints so far as the Swing Queen ascends you to the CD's magnificent original, and what should be a show stopper, "The Queen of Swing". The song which topped independent charts at #8 is set in the vernacular of the 50’s style jump blues. “So tell your friends just where to go, to the juke joint jumping down on Kokomo.”
If your foot is not tapping by now friends and neighbors,
then call in the family because you must be "DEAD." ;o)
With a couple of R&B covers by musical legends, "The Drifters" and R&B megastar, Ray Charles; "Drip Drop" & "Hallelujah, I Love Him So" Kelli takes you to another groove on an even higher level. Which I didn’t think was possible. Complimenting Ray Charles cover with the exact opposite meaning, Kelli wrote a very enjoyable R&B story song which could truly catapult the CD into a Platinum arena, "Don't Mess With Me" which has already hit the #1 spot. (side note: Kelli wrote / recorded "Don't Mess With Texas" for the state of Texas, thus the song/title and was her first #1 hit).
With a “Zing” in my heart I enjoyed the vocals of this amazing singer on the Judy Garland cover, “Zing, Went the Strings of my Heart”. A rather strange but mesmerizing arrangement I found captivating as well as exciting.
Grab your girdle’s girls and strut your stuff to two more of Kelli's penned genius: "Boogie Woogie Stroll" & "Strut My Stuff". The later is a sassy little, I've had enough declaration. Although written from the woman's point of view, the song can easily support either gender.
"Sometimes I Wonder" set in a classic DooWop style for a nice slow or “stroll” dance, takes you back to the wonder of a lost love. Back to a walk down the beach holding hands or a ride down a country road with the top down, to a time when love was innocent as hearts were racing with excitement and ragin’ with anticipation.
But, just as you relax with the memories of “The Way Love Use to Be” (Kelli won an “Honorable Mention from Billboard in R&B for a same titled song), the whole thing explodes into a magnificent revamp of Louie Prima's "5 Months, 2 Weeks, 2 Days". Prima's original consisted of the title line followed with a "Hurry, home home baby" vamp that Prima was known for. Kelli wrote 3 verses giving the song a beginning and end. But the thing that “will get you up and off your seat” (a line from title cut) is the arrangement ... ALL Kelli. The music graduate not only wrote the arrangement but plays each and every note on ALL of the instruments: her signature style of piano – bass (right / left hand) but also; drums, bari, 2 tenor sax parts and 2 trumpet parts. It’s a 4 minute swing revolution that will leave you “swinging” from a chandelier and hanging in anxious anticipation for the next number.
But unfortunately friends, that's the final cut. But WOW! What a ride!!!