Judy Wexler has carved out a jewel-like niche as a gracefully swinging singer who brings penetrating insight to American Songbook-adjacent material often overlooked by her colleagues…Wexler sounds utterly relaxed while delivering some intricately constructed material. While clearly inspired by less-is-more vocalists like Shirley Horn and Irene Kral, she doesn’t sound anything like either of them. With space for countless joys and woes, Wexler’s heart (and book) can continue to contain multitudes.
Indie jazz sensation, versatile and sensual vocalist Judy Wexler weaves magic, charm and emotionally resonant grace through an array of exquisitely arranged contemporary songs she dubs “New Jazz Standards.”
Her voice is lovely and pure, but there’s something tactile going on with the way she burrows deep to discover what emotions are really being considered in the lyrics. That alone elevates her from a mere singer with a beautiful voice to someone who really wants to create the template for everyone else who comes afterward and sings these classics of the future, classics that were first–and hopefully–made famous by her.
Vivacious vocalist Judy Wexler shines a spotlight on outstanding contemporary songwriters in this luminous new jazz collection. Some of Southern California’s top musicians play on this marvelous album, but it’s Wexler’s vibrant vocals, her heartfelt interpretations of these great songs, that make this record so exceptional. She exhibits a rare combination of intelligence, sensitivity and technique.”
You’re crowding my heart…with lovely, strong, breath-tightening, intoxicating emotions as I listen to the disc… boy, is this good. And needed: you’ve done an extra service by putting together such a rich repertoire of modern music that will be brand-new to so many folks. So thanks for that as well.
– Neil Tesser, Grammy Award & Recipient of Jazz Journalists Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award in Jazz Journalism
“Crowded Heart” shows Judy Wexler at her finest. Never one to overwhelm her songs with vocal trickery, Ms. Wexler caresses melodies, reaches for the emotional heart of each song, and, with the aid of Alan Pasqua, gives listeners an experience that resonates beyond the recording, settling in one’s own crowded heart.
Judy Wexler has a terrific voice and she’s done something fairly groundbreaking on her new album: She has selected 10 terrific little-known ballads by contemporary artists, and she clearly was governed by love…Judy’s passion for these songs is evident. She combines an emotional seriousness with a breezy feel and tremendous breath control. These songs are not easy to sing. And with Pasqua’s arrangements and exquisite instrumental backing, the album pays homage to those who are writing smart jazz songs today… Judy’s song choices are especially commendable. Many are melodically complex, but Judy aces them, taking her voice wherever it has to go to satisfy the music and win you over… Brava, Judy!