Our October Jazz Recording of the Month is Norah Jones "Day Breaks" on Blue Note Records.
Norah Jones is back on familiar ground with her latest release "Day Breaks". It is her sixth solo album and a kindred spirit to her breakout debut "Come Away With Me" which won five Grammy Awards in 2003. "Day Breaks" finds her returning to the piano and her roots as a performer. Jazz fans may rejoice since the album features Blue Note luminaries including saxophonist Wayne Shorter, organist Dr. Lonnie Smith, and drummer Brian Blade.
What's especially notable on "Day Breaks" is her songwriting, which appears more confident and wide ranging than on her debut. On that album, and its followup "Feels Like Home", she wrote only a few songs. (Her Grammy-winning hit, “Don’t Know Why,” was composed by Jesse Harris.). "Day Breaks" features a 12-song set that presents 9 new original compositions alongside covers of material by Horace Silver, Duke Ellington and Neil Young. The original songs display what may be Jones' unease with the world she sees, including subjects such as a man undone by alcoholism, and a woman being held back by a relationship. In any case there is much that is familiar here for those who fell in love with Norah Jones on her debut, including the mostly soft singing style and slightly restrained, but confident touch at the piano. It's definitely a more mature outing.
Below is a video for "Carry On" the first single for "Day Breaks".