Prelude To A Kiss
Review by Willard Manus

Vocalist/violinist Calabria Foti recently released her fourth album, PRELUDE TO A KISS. If you dig romance, this CD is for you.

Foti, whose musical heroes are Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland and Nat ‘King’ Cole, emulates them in PRELUDE TO A KISS. She hired a big band (with strings) and top arrangers to help bring her favorite love songs to life. The object, she said, was “to touch people’s hearts and make them feel closer to loved ones. This album is a full-production tear-jerker!”

Foti shows off her warm, smoky voice on such classics as “On the Street Where You Live,” “Prelude to a Kiss,” and “The Folks Who Live on the Hill.” She also sings an original song (“Goodbye”) as well as one her dad wrote for her mom (“I Had to Fall in Love With You”). And on another track (“It’s the Mood I’m In”) she shows off her violin chops as she trades licks with guitarist John Pizzarelli. Then, for a change of pace, she scats on a few other tunes, only to finish things off with a surprising and touching interpretation of a rarely-heard love song by classical-composer Aaron Copeland, “I’m Home.”

PRELUDE TO A KISS is also noteworthy for the gilt-edged work of such musicians as pianist Roger Kellaway, bassist Trey Henry, and trombonist Bob McChesney. The latter also arranged five of the eleven tunes on the album.