Elevate Difference

Songs from the Heart

I’ve listened to Songs From The Heart a number of times now since first receiving it in the mail. Each time I listen, I find myself immediately pulled into the lyrics and Bennett’s smooth and jazzy interpretations of songs like “Someone to Watch Over me” and “As Time Goes By.”When I was a lot younger, I used to think of vocalists like Bennett as creating music for “older” people, but as the years go by, I find myself more and more drawn to jazz in its myriad forms—is there a connection here?

Years ago, my voice teacher assigned the song “My Funny Valentine” to me and I remember her telling me that I hadn’t lived enough to really sing the song with the emotional conviction that was needed. “You’ll understand when you’re a bit older and you’ve really been in love,” she reassured me. I remember feeling annoyed at the time that she had assigned a song that was outside my emotional range. When I heard Bennett’s interpretation of “My Funny Valentine” on this album I finally got it. “That’s what she was talking about all those years ago,” I thought to myself.

Every time I hear Bennett sing the lyrics to “Someone to Watch Over Me,” I can’t help wondering if that song would have been written today. The idea of needing someone to watch over me sounds both comforting and somewhat creepy to me, but Bennett manages to make each of these classics her own, which is no small feat. My favorite song on Songs From The Heart is “As Time Goes By.” As I listen to Bennett, I can almost imagine myself in Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman listening to Sam the piano guy tickling the ivories.

Written by: Gita Tewari, July 8th 2009