Sing! Went the Strings of My Heart
"With a play list of thirteen songs from 1920 to 1959, Loretta Cormier avoids the usual clichés too often used in presenting standards from this era. Her subtle phrasing works since it retains your attention, separating this album from the routine. The interaction between [Campesi’s] violin amid Cormier’s vocalizing is reminiscent of the engaging work of Stuff Smith and Ella Fitzgerald on The Duke Ellington Songbook—Small Group Sessions. One of the highlights of this CD is a pensive, emotion-filled ‘This Heart of Mine.’ ‘Why Try to Change Me Now?’ becomes a musical conversation between Jay Fort’s alto and Cormier’s voice. This is a welcome addition to one’s discography."
All Music Guide
"Loretta is as comfortable with a heart pounding ballad as she is with a swinging finger snapping up-tempo tune, displaying her great range of emotion and versatility."
WNTI – 91.9 FM
" 'Zing' is something that this songstress has in abundance. Loretta has a fine, mature voice that projects genuine warmth on every song she performs. Like Tony Bennett, Loretta has a wonderful sense of time and phrasing. I was truly impressed by her rendition of Irving Berlin’s ‘The Best Thing For You’ and Gershwin’s ‘But Not For Me.’ It’s nice to hear a vocalist singing the verse as they did in the ’30s. Most modern vocalists dismiss the verse as an unnecessary chore when, in fact, it sets the mood of the song. The musicians are top notch and appear in an unconventional format. The cornet is seldom heard today outside traditional jazz groups. The addition of ‘hot violin’ is unusual, but most welcome. This session is worthy of your attention."
"Acoustic jazz standards from a unique singer make [Sing!] a rarity in today’s commercial sound-byte world....charming vocal session...quite natural, down-to-earth, and free from any overt influences....vocal quality is deep and phrasing seamless....original and refreshing....well-formed articulation, strong breath support, and unique delivery....The album swings, and its featured artist offers something quite different."
L.A. Jazz Scene
Los Angeles, CA
"Vocalist Loretta Cormier showcased the full range of her abilities on her first release, Sing! Went the Strings of My Heart. Whether ballads or more swinging tunes, she infused them with solid emotion, strength, and zest. Her debut strikes a balance between fondly remembered favorites like ‘I’ll Remember April’ and less frequently played gems like ‘The Moon Was Yellow.’ Critics have compared her sophisticated phrasing and timing to those of Tony Bennett."
All Music Guide
"Ms. Cormier has a beautiful voice and a persona to match! She can sing a song to make you believe she wrote it herself. The song snaps to life with her instinctive ability to invigorate a song with enthusiasm and energy, and subtlety, too. She revitalizes an old piece of music, giving it that Cormier ‘touch.’ Her music sets a mood, a frame of mind. This singer sparkles like the best-cut diamond—many-faceted and well worth showing off. I highly recommend Sing! Went the Strings of My Heart to anyone who enjoys a good singer who can make a song her own. I’ve listened to it over and over. It’s a keeper."
--Francois Le Guévellou
"...the Loretta Cormier (upbeat arrangements) [CD Sing!]...great and getting lots of air time to the delight of our many listeners."
WRHU – 88.7 FM
"Cormier takes the opportunity to demonstrate she is a fine, sophisticated interpreter of classics from the American Songbook, but imaginative enough to simply not regurgitate the interpretations of other performers. [On Sing!] she adds her imprimatur to these songs."
Marge Hofacre’s Jazz News
"...a singer with a strong melodic voice....convincing...[Sing! Went the Strings of My Heart] a pleasant collection of songs sung romantically and played with fire."
"...she can sing. Nice arrangements and performance. I loved 'This Heart of Mine' --- super track for feeling and execution."
WATD - 95.9 FM
"Great rendition of 'The Nearness Of You.' She has great taste, and it shows in her selection of charts, as well as her band."
L and H Sound Company
Jersey City, NJ
Under a Blanket Of Blue
"It is not a simple task for a singer to be the first, or one of the first few, to perform a song. Not like singing 'Someone to Watch Over Me' or 'My Funny Valentine' and having countless previous versions to serve as guides. In Under A Blanket of Blue, Loretta Cormier fashioned her own version of two of my songs. What she came up with would be pleasing to any songwriter and certainly delighted me. Her warm, expressive voice on these songs and the other well-chosen songs on the album make for a most enjoyable CD."
"It's been too long! Loretta Cormier has just released a follow-up to her 1998 debut Sing! Went the Strings of My Heart. The new CD finds the singer with a trio rather than her previous sextet. However, she continues in the same groove that she knows so well. Loretta loves great songwriters and treats their harvested works with wonderful sincerity. It's nice to see a fine singer do 'You Call It Madness,' penned in part by Russ Columbo in 1931. Loretta sings the verse as singers always did in the '30s but usually omit in recent years. Her version of Joe Bushkin's 'Oh, Look At Me Now' gives ample room for the instrumentalists to break loose. The trio is given a generous amount of space throughout the session, and they're fine players. A special tip of the hat goes to bassist Brandon Rivas. Very impressive! I really enjoyed Loretta Cormier's latest effort. She continues to impress, and I envy the folks in San Antonio who can get to listen to her gently swinging style."
"Adding to the legacy of Loretta Cormier's 1998 album Sing! Went the Strings of My Heart is her latest release, Under A Blanket of Blue. This 15-track masterpiece has the aura and is reminiscent of song stylist greats such as Holiday, Fitzgerald, and Christy. The all-star trio of Andrew Langham (piano), Brandon Rivas (bass), and Gerry Gibbs (drums) finds plenty of room to express their artistic bravura, while the setting spotlights Loretta's voice as a beautiful instrument weaving harmony and melody with rhythm in a style rarely heard from today's artists. She studied her craft under Baltimore-Washington masters Ronnie Wells and Ethel Ennis and has developed an exceptional and unique delivery. Under A Blanket of Blue is a wonderful peaceful journey back to the glory days of jazz! Enjoy it with the one you love!"
Big Band Dance Party
"Your album Under A Blanket of Blue provided Make Believe Ballroom listeners with a grand hour of superb song stylings. The Songbird of San Antonio proves that Texas still does things in a big way."
WSHR - 91.9 FM
Lake Ronkonkoma, NY
"The Great American Songbook can only be interpreted from the heart. These special songs require merely that the artist be natural and serve them up in good taste. Loretta Cormier sings a well-constructed program that includes the classic and the not so familiar....Her expressive interpretation creates an intimate mood that includes the dim lights, hushed attentiveness, and casual friendships usually found in such an environment. With 'You Turned the Tables On Me,' she reveals one of her primary influences, Frank Sinatra, through her seamless phrasing and natural emphasis. One high point of the program is Cormier's interpretation of 'Carioca,' which invites a powerful vocal projection and spreads exotic musings around the room."
L.A. Jazz Scene
Los Angeles, CA
"In the tradition of Doris Day, Jo Stafford, Dinah Shore, Peggy Lee, and those other fine singers from the distaff side who have graced the pages of the history of jazz/popular song with their sparkling treatments of entries from the Great American Songbook, comes Loretta Cormier with her sincere treatment of some of the finest from the pages of the Songbook. Cormier works with a piano trio as she delivers in a highly personal manner a playlist of mostly romantic ballads. There are a couple of tunes where the reaction is likely to be, 'I haven't heard that one in a long time.' One of these is 'I Wish I Knew,' a big hit for Dick Haymes from the 1945 movie Diamond Horseshoe, and another is 'That Certain Feeling,' a 1925 ditty by the Gershwin brothers. Contemporary ballad writer Ed Greenebaum finds a couple of his tunes on the playlist, both respectable products from the composing pen. 'I Should Care' is delivered medium tempo with some scintillating piano from Andrew Langham. An album highlight is an a capella rendering of 'Too Late Now.' All of these and more are insightfully conveyed by Cormier with a set of vocal pipes that produce good diction and a fine sense for the melody and lyrics. Recommended."
All Music Guide
"Excellent choice of songs [Under A Blanket of Blue], fine accompaniment for an exceptional voice. [Loretta] is completely relaxed...with these musicians."
WFIU - 103.7 FM
"A rich and charming vocal treatment, a clearly matured voice with a very personal touch. It's a sophisticated lady with a clear meaning of how to interpret old school jazz classics. The album starts off with the Fischer/Carey song 'You've Changed' from 1942. The CD contains 15 songs from the great American Songbook of jazz. One of my favorites is 'Someone Just Like You'; the music is down to earth....You Turned the Tables on Me' shows Cormier's deep and strong voice. The three musicians have to be mentioned because the sensibility and timing in their playing make a perfect space for a vocal that has to be guarded....True enjoyment. A real treat for all genuine jazz lovers."
"It's a pleasure to hear these songs sung with vocalist and small combo, rather than in bloated arrangements with big band or orchestra....The song arrangements by pianist Andrew Langham are very tasteful and nicely bring out the elements of good jazz writing. The other two musicians add a good deal of smoky jazz flavor....Among the songs I especially enjoyed were: 'The Quiet Side' (this fine song and arrangement should become a new standard!); 'That Certain Feeling' (nicely sung and played in an easy to take jazz setting of this great song by the Gershwins from 1925); 'Gone With the Wind' (another outstanding rendition of this wonderful song recorded by Mel Torme and others); 'I Should Care' (swinging setting of one of my favorite Sammy Cahn songs and the title of his autobiography); and the CD title song (a good closing number)."
Songwriter, Teacher, Lecturer