Earlier this week…
…Brad “Martini” Chambers (of Martiniinthemorning fame) pointed me toward a rising young singing talent — Luca Ellis. After visiting Mr. Ellis’ website to listen to some of his material, all I can say is “wow”.
OK, you know me by now … and I always have more than one word to toss around on any topic, but I am going to keep it short here and simply suggest you also stop over to Luca’s website and take a listen.
Though yet to release his debut album, Luca has posted 16 full tracks of mostly classic Sinatra numbers … “I Wish You Love” is the first track and begins playing when you arrive on his site. Maybe my all time favorite Sinatra song … I was floored to hear this kid belt it out in a rich, confident, Sinatra-esk fashion.
“I Believe In You”, “Fly Me To The Moon”, “More”, “Let’s Fall In Love”, “I’m Gonna Live Until I Die” … Ellis’ web offering is the pop tenderloin cut of Sinatra’s oeuvre.
BTW, these are not low-ball demo tracks with scant accompaniment. On most, the production value is excellent with Ellis crooning an “albums worth” plus of Ken Wallace arranged American Songbook classics out in front of the Paul Litteral Orchestra. Somebody needs to get these guys in a recording studio or at the very least release these tracks … this is great stuff!
Some may argue…
…that Luca is just imitating Sinatra rather than bringing a fresh interpretation to these songs … and they would be wrong to do so. The kid performed the “Ol’ Blue Eyes” role in Sandy Hackett’s Vegas Rat Pack Show and Luca can certainly “bring the Frank”, but it’s too early to be tagging him with the “Frank Imitator” label.
He may have broken in aping Sinatra, but his talent is obvious to anyone that gives him a listen. It will be fun to watch him develop his style and assume what I expect to be a prominent place on the vocal standards/American Songbook stage.
Last fall I started a Vocal Standards “watch list” for talent breaking in, or on the rise … guys like Robert Davi, Joseph Leo Bwarie and LEMj inaugurated the list. After listening to Luca Ellis’ material he certainly belongs on the list!
I’ll say it again … somebody needs to get this guy in a recording studio!