Daphne Willis – What To Say

January 01, 1970

(Vanguard)

www.vanguardrecords.com

 

Suffice it to say, there’s no shortage of sassy, soulful
young women permeating the music biz these days, and in that regard, 22
year-old Daphne Willis certainly finds her fit. Given her unwavering enthusiasm
and spunky rhythms, songs like “Everybody Else,” “Bluff” and “All I Know” would
all make a worthy addition to today’s radio-ready fare. As befits her youthful
enthusiasm, Willis takes a playful approach, one that coos, caresses and
seduces her listeners, with a teasingly entreating set marked by a mostly
upbeat sensibility.  One of the few
exceptions comes courtesy of the closing track, “Jim Thornton,” which Willis
imbues with an unusually sultry vocal, which is especially curious considering
it’s intended as tribute to her grandfather, who passed away late last year.

 

Actually, that’s one reason for the dilemma besetting this
debut album overall. While What To Say is effusively engaging, the ever-infectious groove tends to make all these
songs meld together. While individual tracks would likely stand out on their
own, taken in tandem, it’s a challenge to distinguish one from another.  That’s too bad, because otherwise, Willis
would otherwise make What To Say seem
practically a no-brainer.

Standout Tracks: Everybody Else,”
“Bluff,” “Jim Thornton” LEE ZIMMERMAN

 

 

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