"I think this my new favorite rendition of the song. Daria's original verse of ‘White Christmas’ has never been set more appropriately than within the beginning of this Afro-Caribbean feel--chromatically rising with the temperature! The recording clarity is pristine and the arrangement is relatable and contagiously dance-able. The piano montuno fills present a musical vocabulary that is both recognizable and creative. The vocals are beautiful. What a rich, warm, lovely instrument Daria has! And that fearless piano solo is full of adventure. It is evident to me that this is a musician’s musician—a healthy balance of chops, zen, and musical warrior. It’s innovate and creative without ever abandoning the listener. It’s nice to hear the vocals taking some risks on the head out—perhaps ad libs inspired by the piano solo? Again, if the listener is dancing by the time the closing ii-V-iii-VI vamp begins, I don’t know what to say. Bravo to all involved."
“It's a voice that utterly captivated me the first time I heard it. The voice of Daria in action. No matter what she was singing, embracing the balladry of Great American Songbook standards, romping through familiar pop tunes, swinging jazz riffs, dipping into the roots of the blues and beyond. And it was vividly apparent, even in her early albums, that Daria was (and is) a singer with the talent to place her in the upper levels of the jazz vocal art. The proof, as always, is in the tracks. Daria’s versions of the songs, arranged by bassist Sam Bevan and Daria, are sheer magic. - It’ll be no surprise if Daria’s memorable version of 'Strawberry Fields Forever, Songs by the Beatles’, really does last 'Forever’.”
- Don Heckman, International Review Of Music
"Daria’s swingin’ high-talent vocals on these classics from the Fab 4 caught my ear as soon as I started spinning them… her take on “When I’m 64“, for instance, is really upbeat & timely… very cool! I’ve no doubt that all four Beatles would be snappin’ their fingers right along to the beat on Daria’s jazzy rendition of “Cant Buy Me Love“… very nicely arranged, and you’ll hear her total talent for scat on this one, too. Her list of players is way too long to itemize here, but I’ll tell you right now that she (definitely) picked the right artists to contribute to her vocal work. Of the eleven tracks offered up for your nostalgia and entertainment trippin’, there was no doubt for my ears as to what my personal favorite is – Daria’s performance on “Come Together” is right-on dow-un & funky cool. I give her a HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.98 for this excellent jazz vocal trip down mem’ry lane (that organ on this track is KILLER, folks!” - Dick Metcalf,
Improvisation Nation Rotcod Zzaj
“Not cutesy cover bands; not musicians who try to sound like them; not cover music….I've heard some of Daria's work before…the girl has got a musical way about her, without a doubt. In fact, she’s got more Jazzic mojo going than some female jazz performers that I could name…but no, I’ll resist that temptation…..Daria and her ensemble sung her way past my sleeping dragons, and touched my heart. Really….The arrangements are lovely and Jazzic, with a variety of instrumentations and an excellent feel for the possibilities of The Beatles' compositions. The spirit of Jazz is improv, of course, and so don't expect simple covers here. Daria rules…she's the driving force at the core of each of these tracks, with compelling vocal performances and a smooth seduction in all of her musical insights. Her surety of interpretation and artistic execution are marvelous, and don't pall over time. Is there anything worse than boring jazz? And this isn't. Sweet and mellow, but done with mastery and a bit of an edge. Great stuff!….And highly recommended!”
"Daria’s vocal sound, creamily-rich and flowing, allied as it is to her ability to delve deeply in her interpretations, bring fresh life to songs that are, however hard it is to believe it, around half a century old."
"Daria has a budding solo career and it's easy to tell why. When showcased, she demonstrated a voice that suggested that Mozart's Koningin der Nacht would not be beyond her. I am tempted to suggest we invite her back to Astoria."
- The Daily Astorian
"Daria successfully reinvents 10 Lennon-McCartney standards for the jazz idiom..
“When I’m Sixty-Four.” The arrangement uses chords that pull the melody in unexpected directions, while Daria’s phrasing (on this song and throughout the album) is marked by unusual hesitations that give a new perspective to the lyrics. When she purrs, “You can knit a sweater by the fireside,” she makes it sound like a sensual delight. “Come Together” gets a samba accent, with subtle percussion and Wes Montgomery-like guitar fills supporting a vocal that slips and slides up and down the singer’s impressive range..The stand out track is “Bird Medley,” Bevan’s minimal acoustic bass introduces Daria’s poignant vocal as she slides up to a near falsetto that intensifies the longing ache at the heart of the song. Her scatted vocal embroiders the melody of “Icarus.” Jonathan Alford comes in to take a mellow solo on the Fender Rhodes before gliding into straightforward rendition of “Bye-Bye Blackbird.” And the arrangement closes with the band and Daria interposing the melodies of “Blackbird” and “Bye-Bye Blackbird.”
"Daria, a very talented singer from Northern California, on Strawberry Fields Forever performs ten songs composed by either Paul McCartney or John Lennon. However this is not a typical Beatles tribute album or an attempt to merely duplicate the famous versions of their hits. The arrangements of Daria and bassist Sam Bevan turn the pop/rock songs into jazz, often in surprising ways. “When I’m Sixty Four” and “Can’t Buy Me Love” swing hard (with Daria scatting on the latter), “Come Together” is transformed into a Brazilian romp, and “If I Fell” fares very well as stirring Latin jazz. Other highpoints include the eccentric “Find A Hole,” a very different version of “The Fool On The Hill” and a warm rendition of the ballad “Julia.” Daria also contributes one original (She’s Going Home”) that wraps up the CD quite well. With strong support and occasional solos from top Bay area musicians (including four horn players), Daria succeeds at turning some of the Beatles songs into 21st century modern jazz."
“Putting you on the edge of your seat to expect the unexpected, the most hardened Beatles purist will find nothing to carp about here. A winner throughout by a pro who cares - and it shows."
"The project is unique, creative, and deserves a place in your record collection."
“Taking on songs of the Beatles can be a daunting task, but it’s one that vocalist Daria handles with perfection on Strawberry Fields Forever. The singer delivers the lyrics and the vibe here with the grace of her obvious experience. She seamlessly shifts from ballad to swing on a recording that is nicely balanced… Daria is a stellar vocalist and this is a superb recording.”
D. Glenn Daniels of The Jazz Page
"Daria is a sensitive singer and she nails the content 100%... Daria manages to retain the mood of the originals whilst, at the same time, injecting her own personality into the mix."
""Daria is an excellent singer and her treatment of these well known classics is thoughtful and delivered with insight"
"Another big surprise is Daria's rendition of "Helter Skelter." I wouldn't have expected this to work as well as it does. The energy is obviously very different from that in the original rendition, but this version so damn cool and catchy and wonderful. It has a funky edge and is a whole lot of fun. I love this track."
“Daria is not afraid to take chances with her production and arranging capabilities…. Daria may be a very excellent jazz producer and arranger, trapped inside a pop singer’s body.”
“Daria covers the Beatles through her mojo filter…What Daria brings to the table, she brings in abundance and with complete confidence.”
"I’m a bit of a Beatles purist but there have been moments of sheer genius when some have reinterpreted Beatles tunes and done it beautifully. I’m thinking especially of Earth, Wind and Fire’s Got to Get You into My Life. Loved it.
So I confess my skepticism at the beginning. But that was soon replaced by “Holy smokes! I like this arrangement!” ...
...The album concludes with She’s Going Home, a Daria original based on the Beatles tune She’s Leaving Home. In a complete twist of tone, narrative, and tempo, Daria employs the same short-story technique that Lennon loved. Lennon’s original was painful and was often difficult on the emotions, while Daria tells a happy tale.
It is as if she is continuing John’s original story of the girl who left, on the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album, and is now going back home on Daria’s album. In fact, I pulled out my Beatles album and listened to the Lennon song and followed it with Daria’s song. It is a wonderful way to wrap up the story and to end the album. As much as I enjoyed the whole album, this was my favorite track. I’m not kidding."
"Her interpretations are “reimagined” and filled with surprises and creativity.....there were no predictable versions ...Daria’s superb trio, which consisted of pianist Otmaro Ruiz, electric bassist Abraham Laboriel and drummer Alex Acuna, played a tasteful and sensitive version of “Norwegian Wood.”....Fresh renditions of “Strawberry Fields” and “Come Together,” displaying her wide range, making percussive sounds in spots, and rarely singing the expected.... “Can’t Buy Me Love” (which included some scatting) was worthy of Ella Fitzgerald..Daria and her trio succeeded at turning the Beatles repertoire into jazz. Her CD is well worth picking up."
Scott Yanow LA Jazz Scene
“Most of all, it is Daria’s voice that is captivating. There is something of Sheila Jordan in the way that she tells stories; so good in fact that I might even trust her with a Charlie Parker melody. Her phrasing is full of emotional directness and daubed with vivid imagery. She can scat with the very best jazz inflection, sing wordlessly with compelling story-teller fantasy and her bright timbre complements everything else with lilting tenderness. Calling Daria one of a kind may be putting it so mildly that I may stand trial for gross understatement.”
“Daria has reimagined Lennon/McCartney songs, giving them jazz twists and often utilizing bossa nova or Afro-Cuban rhythms. Approach the project with open minds and ears and the results will be rewarding. The tunes take on an entirely different feel. The vibrant, inventive vocalist gives “Can’t Buy Me Love” a very cool sound. “ The Fool on the Hill” is impeccably arranged. “Helter Skelter” really cooks. “She’s Going Home” is a moving ballad as is “Julia”. Daria retains a taste of the psychedelic in her “Strawberry Fields Forever.” Whether she swings or sways, she engages the listener. After a decade of providing backing vocals for Dan Hicks, Daria belongs in the spotlight.”
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