Image © Jeannine Hebb 2007
click for artist's MySpace
photo by Nathan Welch
Image © Jeannine Hebb 2009
(30 May 2009) A rare few times each year, we discover a female artist whose music completely blows us away. This happened when our friends at Ariel Publicity introduced us to Jeannine Hebb via her 2007 debut EP Too Late To Change Me. Her music is certain to appeal to those that follow Eleisha Eagle (latest review) and the rapidly emerging singer songwriter from Israel Savannah Zwi (review).
Jeannine is an award-winning songwriter and vocalist who has been studying, performing, writing, and rocking out since she was eleven. At 20, she graduated magna cum laude from Berklee College of Music, having studied with some of the best in the business, including Gabrielle Goodman, Pat Pattison and Livingston Taylor. For two consecutive years, she won both the Berklee Singer/Songwriter and Songwriting Showcase competitions.
Jeannine was chosen as the recipient of the Frank E. Remick and E. Ione Lockwood awards for excellence in music and vocal performance, and was honored with the Susan Glover Hitchcock scholarship for outstanding musicianship. Upon graduation, Jeannine received the Scott Benson scholarship for performing songwriters, the highest honor in the Berklee songwriting department.
Since graduation, Jeannine has been seen both as a singer and songwriter at many a famous venue in the Northeast including: Scullers, The Ragatta Bar, The Middle East, Harper's Ferry, The Berklee Performance Center, The Bitter End, Rockwood Music Hall, Don Hill's, and Galapagos Art Space, and many more. She's appeared with jazz legends Ben Monder, Clarence Penn, James Genus, and Tim Ries, and has served as an opening act for two-time grammy nominee Tracy Bonham.
Jeannine’s debut EP is comprised of six original songs. Entitled Too Late to Change Me (Jeannine Hebb (USA) 7 96873 03516 3, 2007), the EP has already received national attention and acclaim. The songs, while roughly categorized as pop/rock, borrow influence from blues, jazz, R&B and soul. Comparisons have been made to Fiona Apple, Laura Nyro, Carole King, and Norah Jones.
Jeannine (vocals, keys) is joined by Ujin Amano (guitar), Dan Wintersteen (drums, percussion), Bryan Ladd (bass), Clifton Hude (acoustic guitar on "Just Enough For Me") and Saric (additonal guitars) on the recording. Produced by Saric and Jeannine, the recording, mix and mastering of the six songs on this EP are superb.
Percussive piano and crisp percussion provide the foundation for the upbeat "Only Ones," the opening song on the compact disc. Immediate allusions to Eleisha Eagle's earliest recordings come to mind, vocals soaring well above the well arranged instrumantals. The rhythmic track "Things Haven't Been So Bad Lately," is gorgeous. The tension that builds in each verse is completely released in the melodic chorus. The tremendous harmony vocals contribute a warm texture, especially as the track builds to its climax, and the guitar solo breaks the song away from string singer songwriter territory.
"All The Way Down" is a lightly arranged heartfelt ballad sung atop piano. The album's title track "Too Late To Change Me" is a standout. Extremely well arranged instrumentally, Jeannine's stunning lead vocal is backed by lovely multi-layered self-harmonies. Listeners will adore the lush expanse of this gorgeous song. Others' comparison's of Jeannine's music to Laura Nyro's work is evident in the bluesy downtempo "Just Enough For Me." Delivered with heartfelt vocals, the disc concludes with the piano-backed ballad "Whatever You Want." It left us longing for more.
Although released two years ago, the debut EP by Jeannine Hebb remains a stunning example of the singer songwriter's vast talent. One new song has emerged streaming on MySpace
with an accompanying video on YouTube. The artist is clearly working towards a full length album. Join us impatiently in the wait for her next release.