1. Gently [2:54]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass

Jeff Mironov, acoustic guitar - Phil Stewart, drums

 

     2. I’m Just A Lucky So And So [3:42]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass

Phil Stewart, drums

 

    3. You Must Believe in Spring [2:10]

Underwood, piano

 

    4. I Love My Wife [2:38]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, cello & bass

Jeff Mironov, electric guitar - Phil Stewart, drums

 

    5. Sweet Kentucky Ham [4:12]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, cello

 

    6.You’re Looking at Me [2:14]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass

Jeff Mironov, electric guitar -Phil Stewart, drums

 

    7.  A Child Is Born [2:17]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, cello

 

   8.  Desafinado[2:59]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass

Jeff Mironov, acoustic guitar - Phil Stewart, drums.

 

   9.  Willow Creek [4:08]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, cello

 

   10.  I Like to Lead When I Dance [3:20]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass

Phil Stewart, drums

 

   11.  It All Depends On You [2:08]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass & cello

Jeff Mironov, electric guitar - Phil Stewart, drums

 

   12.  There Used to be a Ball Park [3:28]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass & cello

Phil Stewart, drums

 

   13.  Underneath The Apple Tree [3:16]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass

Phil Stewart, drums

 

   14.  The Inch Worm [3:05]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass & cello

Phil Stewart, drums

 

   15.  One October Morning [3:26]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass

Jeff Mironov, acoustic guitar - Phil Stewart, drums

 

   16.  Early to Bed [3:21]

Frank Underwood, piano - Jennifer Vincent, bass - Phil Stewart, drums

As Reviewed by JOE REGAN

TIMES SQUARE CHRONICLES, September, 2012

 

Clark Warren whom I first met when we both apprenticed in the late 50s at the Westport Country Playhouse, re-surfaced in my life when I saw him appear at one of Stu Hamstra’s special cabaret celebration. I didn’t know him as a singer then, but it seems he has been singing throughout his entire life, and especially during his military career as part of the Third Army Special Services appearing live at 13 military bases. I know he is constantly performing at senior citizen residences and hospitals in the area. Now he has released a new CD, Lucky So and So (SnowBert Records), and will be participating in a special CD launch show Saturday, September 22 at the Metropolitan Room in New York City.

      First of all, let me state Warren, of a certain age when some singers voices deteriorate, sings like a young singer, at times sounding like the great Mark Murphy when he was younger, about the time that Warren and I met. There is no lowering of keys and there is a casual way with a lyric that communicates every word with an accomplished actor’s phrasing. He has had the skill of assembling a superb set of musicians for the album. There is his musical director/pianist/arranger Franklin Underwood whose piano (and vocal harmony on some tracks), demonstrate he is a brilliant musician and composer. Classically trained Jennifer Vincent, bassist and cellist, turns the bass clef of a piano score into her own cello compositions and enhances most

of the tracks. Jeff Mironov who plays electric and acoustic guitar is also an award winning musician and Phil Stewart, on drums, has performed with many jazz greats and toured with the Grant Stewart Quartet.

      Yes, this is a jazz program but the programming on the CD alternates wistful ballads with strong rhythm numbers. The First track is a song new to me, “Gently” by Lindy Robin and Billy Stritch, a pleasant sweet love song, and Warren sings it lucidly with the full quartet of musicians, and on this track as several others, Underwood’s arrangements make it sound like a full orchestra is accompanying Warren’s suave singing.

      Warren really rips into Mac David and Duke Ellington’s “I’m Such A Lucky So and So” and even plays harmonica on some parts. Then there is a very personal “L Love My Wife” from Jones and Schmidt’s I Do I Do and a wonderfully wistful “Sweet Kentucky Ham” (Frishberg) with only piano and cello accompaniment and Warren’s rendition

is perfection.

      Among the unfamiliar songs Warren sings are Thad Jones and Alec Wilder’s “A Child is Born,” Loonis McGlohon and Marian McPartland’s “Willow Creek,” “Under the Apple Tree” by Michael Franks (Warren does a brief bit of scatting on this track) and Bobby Troup’s “One October Morning.” Warren uses “Lazy Afternoon” to lead into “Willow Creek,” which he discovered on an old Julius La Rosa LP. Warren himself wrote and introductory verse for Sammy Cahn and James Van Heusen’s “I Like To Lead When I Dance,” which sets up the romanticism of the lyrics and melody. There is also a different lyric by Gene Lees from the one  we all know to Jobim’s “Desafinado” and Warren, singing with the whole group, doesn’t miss one tongue-twisting word, hitting each consonant so fast, so clearly and musically that I don’t know when ever took a breath!

      Three of the best tracks are Joe Raposo’s  “There Used To Be a Ballpark” which begins softly and then builds to a bigger and stronger climax; Frank Loesser’s “Inchworm,” with its rarely sung verse and all three choruses; and especially, Richard Rodney Bennett and Underwood’s “Early To Be.” It’s a special treat to hear these songs sung

by Warren and played by Underwood, Vincent and Stewart.

      I would strongly urge every singer, musician, and fan

of the Great American Songbook to buy this CD and see Warren’s show Saturday September 22nd.

       Clark Warren’s CD release party for Lucky So and So takes place at the Metropolitan Room, 34 West 22 street, New York, NY.

As Reviewed by JOHN HOGLUND

CABARET SCENES – MARCH, 2013

 

Right at the top, in his liner notes, veteran crooner Clark Warren says, "I enjoy uncovering and performing seldom heard songs." That neatly sums up this interesting collection of rarely-heard selections by a senior who still has enough pepper to have a good time, understand the lyric and convey the meaning of it all. He repeatedly unleashes a man of a certain age who loves a song with good lyrics. Warren brings substance to whatever he sings on this disc. In doing so, he strikes a heartfelt chord that younger singers might learn from.

A regular on the cabaret scene for decades now, fused with a longer history of entertaining as part of the Third Army Special Services performing all over the country while serving in the military, Warren recalls the days of the boy singer who grew up with the sounds of the big band. At times, he also recalls an aged-in-wood Dick Haymes in his careful phrasing. This melancholic CD defines a calm, knowledgeable man comfortable in his own skin. And, he makes it worthwhile.

With an assist from his terrific jazzy collaborators Franklin Underwood on piano, Jeff Mironov on
guitar, Jennifer Vincent, acoustic bass/cello and Phil Stewart on drums, this album is a keeper for all the right reasons. Warren is no Tony Bennett and doesn't try to be. In fact, he doesn't try to be anybody he isn't. At an age when others might just play golf or lay on the sofa, Clark Warren steps up to the plate and knocks it home in an imperfect, albeit effective, laid back voice that breathes life into these well-chosen gems. And, he makes

them his own. It's inspiring and endearing as is this album.

There are many highlights worth citing, from the beautiful "Gently," the album's first cut by Lindy Robbins and Billy Stritch, to the sentimental closer, "Early to Bed," an exceptional choice written by Underwood and the late Richard Rodney Bennett. Both gems deserve their place in today's contemporary repertoire. In between, he emotes personal touches on "I Love My Wife" (from I Do, I Do) with brio. He personalizes the opening verse on the romantic Cahn/Van Heusen "I Like to Lead When I Dance" and offers a solid treatment on Jobim's tricky "Desafinado." (Portugese lyrics: Newton Mendonca; English lyrics: Jon Hendricks.) A serious highlight is an expressive reading of Joe Raposo's "There Used to Be a Ball Park," originally recorded by Sinatra in the mid-seventies that has recently found its way into some cabaret acts. He also adds the rarely heard verse to Frank Loesser's "Inchworm." The album becomes a timeline of romantic and humorous musings by a veteran with the right panache. Like crooners from the past, his respect for lyrics and the American Songbook are his calling card and well worth the listen. 

As Reviewed by MARIAN MACPARTLAND

                           Jazz Pianist/Composer

"…always great when someone records one of my songs…and a special surprise to hear (Clark Warren) sing “Willow Creek.” It was very good and I like the whole CD.” 

All images copyright by Clark Warren 2016