Lisa Biales is jazz artist and a fine interpreter of songs from a number of different traditions. She has now returned with her ninth album titled The Beat Of My Heart.
Two years ago she came across a 78 rpm record recorded in 1947 by her mother, Alberta Roberts. “Crying Over You” begins with her mother singing the first verse and then Biales finishing the song. It is an emotional ride.
She transforms Eric Bibb’s gospel-tinged “Don’t Let Nobody Drag Your Spirit Down” into a subtle jazz classic. Carrie Newcomer’s “I Should Have Know Better” is a little more edgy. The old Nina Simone tune “Be My Husband” is a smoldering cover. The best song may be “Messin’ Around With The Blues,” which has a cadence and clarity that is at the heart of her approach.
Biales has developed into a secure artist, who is secure in who she is as a vocalist. The Beat Of My Heart is another building block in her legacy.