Promise comes along every so often, but it is very rare for a jazz singer to emerge on the international stage in full-blown glory; now comes Frank Senior with promise well and truly fulfilled—on his debut recording Listening In The Dark With Frank Senior due out on Smalls Records this October 14th. This one will stop you in your tracks, with the feeling you’re hearing for the first time someone famous they forgot to tell you about.
Blind since birth, Senior knows the world by its sound. He knows the city by its pulse. He knows you for what you have to say. He knows the music of love. And he returns sound back to the world in vocal kind, telling it like it is, and saying it like he means it. His golden voice obliges him, and his thorough training gives him a bedrock foundation for a very soulful sound.
He’s joined here by a stellar band, featuring saxophone great Bob Mover, guitarist Saul Rubin, pianist Richard Clements, bassists Eric Lemon and Hassan Shakur, drummer Jacob Melchior, and violinist Efrat.
Senior himself is no overnight sensation. He was a music student at NYU in the 1970s and has been singing for many years, developing a loyal following along the way. But you’d have to have been alert to catch him until now. Senior is a man of the people, someone who is used to bringing his trade around the upper east and west sides of Manhattan, where he has standing invitations from a multitude of restaurants and clubs to perform impromptu. Senior has a special ability to reach out to people of all kinds in a city notorious for its tough audiences, and to get them to forget their cares for a while. His commanding performance is a part of what makes this record so special. Thanks to the perfectionist in him, we’re left with no doubt that a major vocal force has arrived.