Jazz Album of the Week: Jeff Goldblum and the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra Are Back!
January 13, 2020. Jeff Goldblum (yes, THAT Jeff Goldblum) and the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra are at it again, with more mash-ups, jazz standards, and collaborations on I Shouldn’t Be Telling You This, the follow-up album to 2018’s The Capitol Sessions.
To refresh your memory, the first release was a product of Goldblum taking up a residency playing piano at a venue in Los Angeles that ended up being packed to the gills on a regular basis. On top of that, he performed an impromptu duet with Gregory Porter on British television. Decca records wanted something to happen, and it did. And now it happened again.
Porter actually takes part in this new album, delivering a lovely rendition of “Make Someone Happy” with Goldblum, an accomplished accompanist since childhood, leading the melody right where it needs to be. Other esteemed guests include singer/songwriter Sharon Van Etten, English sensation Anna Calvi (who contributed to the Peaky Blinders soundtrack), jazz maven Gina Saputo, and one half of The Bird and the Bee, Inara George.
Goldblum has some real star power behind this music, right? Pfft. I’m just getting started! Joining Jeff and the orchestra on “Don’t Worry ‘Bout Me,” set to the melody of “Poinciana,” is none other than Fiona Apple. Yes, that Fiona Apple. The singer/songwriter, known for the artsy pop with a message that was synonymous with the ‘90s, sounds like she belongs in front of that large group.
The stardom piece de resistance happens on the unlikely mash-up of “The Thrill Is Gone” with “Django.” The guest vocalist is Miley Cyrus. Yes, that Miley Cyrus. Her voice has the heft to truly deliver in front of the orchestra, and her country sensibility lends itself perfectly to those lyrics made famous by B.B. King.
Goldblum plays some piano with just the orchestra as well, including familiar favorites like “Driftin,’” “The Kicker,” and “The Cat,” and even lends his voice to “Little Man You’ve Had A Busy Day.”
It’s nice to have some mainstream star power behind a great jazz album. I guess it’s just great to have star power behind jazz. He even took his act to late night television, and hilarity ensued. Not only is this a nice boost for the jazz industry, but we have something great to listen too as well.