Havana Angels

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jon O'Brien
Completing her Cuban trilogy following 2006's Bossa Blue and 2008's La Historia de Lola, Havana Angels sees Quebec jazz-pop chanteuse Florence K transform her favorite holiday songs into Latino, dancefloor-ready numbers suitable for any time of the year, alongside several attempts to produce some of her own future seasonal classics. Recorded in the Cuban capital with producer Osvaldo Montes, the Canadian tackles vintage festive staples with aplomb, providing a Bacharach-esque lounge pop feel to Elvis' classic "Blue Christmas" with its elegant sweeping strings and flamenco guitar licks, turning Eartha Kitt's "Santa Baby," and the Meet Me in St Louis standard "Have Yourself a...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jon O'Brien
Completing her Cuban trilogy following 2006's Bossa Blue and 2008's La Historia de Lola, Havana Angels sees Quebec jazz-pop chanteuse Florence K transform her favorite holiday songs into Latino, dancefloor-ready numbers suitable for any time of the year, alongside several attempts to produce some of her own future seasonal classics. Recorded in the Cuban capital with producer Osvaldo Montes, the Canadian tackles vintage festive staples with aplomb, providing a Bacharach-esque lounge pop feel to Elvis' classic "Blue Christmas" with its elegant sweeping strings and flamenco guitar licks, turning Eartha Kitt's "Santa Baby," and the Meet Me in St Louis standard "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" into toe-tapping samba anthems, and adding a subtle bossa-nova vibe to Bing Crosby favorite "I'll Be Home for Christmas." But it's away from the yuletide staples where her sophisticated timeless vocals and impressive musicianship shine, such as her faithful cover version of traditional Appalachian spiritual "Down to the River to Pray," made even more powerful by the guest vocals from Afro-Cuban ensemble Sintesis, and her poignant duet with her mother, soprano Natalie Choquette, on a gentle rendition of Ariel Ramirez's "La Peregrinacion." The self-penned compositions understandably feel second-rate when compared to such well-regarded material, but the gently strummed folk collaboration with guitarist Jesse Cook, "Havana Light," the longing piano-led torch song "I Hear the Bells" and the seductive brass-fused rhumba of opening track "Little Angels" all suggest Florence is capable of matching them in the future. With such a broad range of songs, Havana Angels sometimes strays from its original concept, but pedantics aside, it's a pleasant and charming final installment which doesn't need the excuse of a holiday to be enjoyed.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/2/2010
  • Label: Select Canada
  • UPC: 064027242324
  • Catalog Number: 2724232
  • Sales rank: 252,930

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Florence K Primary Artist, Piano, Hammond B3
Philippe Dunnigan Strings
Osvaldo Montes Guitar
Juan Manuel Ceruto Flute, Musical Direction
Andrea Hopkins Voices
Tomas Ramos Percussion
Walter Ríos Bandoneon
Didier Dumoutier Accordion
Ligia Paquin Strings
Carla Antoun Strings
Francisco Pancho Amat Tres
Chantal Bergeron Strings
Kristina Campbell Voices
Thommy Lowry Trumpet
Angel Gaston Joya Perellada Upright Bass
Giovany Arteaga Saxophone
Edouardo J. Sandoval Ferrer Trombone
Garcia Rojas Trumpet
Pipo Perabo Shaker
Michael Olivera Garcia Drums
Leider Candebat Chappotin Trumpet
Technical Credits
Buck Ram Composer
Ariel Ramírez Composer
Kim Gannon Composer
Antonio Carlos Jobim Composer
Walter Kent Composer
Hugh Martin Composer
Jimmy Tanaka String Arrangements
Toby Gendron Engineer
Philip Springer Composer
Andy VanDette Mastering
Ralph Blane Composer
Osvaldo Montes Arranger, Composer, Producer
Juan Manuel Ceruto Horn Arrangements
Tony Springer Composer
Florence K Arranger, Composer, Producer
Popi Spatocco String Arrangements
Jay W. Johnson Composer
K. Campbell Composer
Billy Hayes Composer
Felix César Luna Composer
Joan Ellen Javits Composer
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