Downbeat – Carol Welsman “For You” (4 stars)

Canadian vocalist Carol Welsman, a six-time Juno Award Nominee, turned to her fans on social media to help select the tracks for this sweetly evocative new album. In an online event spanning Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and her website, Welsman provided 30-second sound bites of 23 solo piano/vocal tracks recorded by Japanese producer Takao Ishizuka in 2016 and asked her online following to vote for their favorites. The top 15 songs selected by voters became the program on For You.

The resulting album is an intimate affair spanning songs in multiple languages, including Spanish (“Besame Mucho”), French (“Les Feuilles Mortes”) and Italian (“Ti Guardero Nel Cuor”). But the bulk of the material is drawn from the Great American Songbook, and Welsman takes to classics like “Skylark,” “The Shadow of Your Smile” and “My Funny Valentine” from angles of adoration and invention. Her voice – satiny and emotive – drapes magnificently across the contours of “My Foolish Heart,” which she adorns with delicate clouds of piano, while on Carpenters-associated “Close To You,” she casts soaring wordless vocals into the carefree, windswept melody.

Review by Brian Zimmerman
Original Article