Album: Esperanza Spalding, Chamber Music Society (Heads Up)

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The Independent Culture

She's still emulating Norah Jones more than Charles Mingus but with this third album the double bassist and singer Esperanza Spalding announces her arrival as a major star.

It helps that the music is based around something she knows well – strings – and that her co-producer and arranger Gil Goldstein has proved so sympathetic a partner, but Spalding's joyful musicality animates every track. Nine of the 11 tunes are her own; Milton Nascimento sings a duet on "Apple Blossom", and Gretchen Parlato guests on Jobim's "Inutil Paisagem".