It’s a shame Franco-American jazz singer Cyrille Aimée didn’t come through Eugene a little closer to Valentine’s Day, because her romantic brand of adorable and sugary jazz would be a perfect gift for that special someone.
Aimée shares a resume on par with Edith Piaf. As a child, she was enchanted with gypsy jazz, going on to perform on the streets of Europe. She was an undiscovered diamond in the rough until appearing on Star Academy, the French equivalent of American Idol.
Since then she’s gone on to win the Shure Montreux Jazz Voice Competition and the Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition.
Now based in Brooklyn, Aimée comes to Eugene in support of her 2014 release, It’s a Good Day, a record that showcases her enchanting and distinctive voice alongside the virtuosic guitar work of Michael Valeanu.
“We worked hard to create a road map for each guitar to make the sound beautiful and exciting,” Aimée says via press release, “without creating a musical traffic jam.”
Throughout the record you’ll hear covers as diverse as Peggy Lee’s “It’s a Good Day,” Michael Jackson’s “Off The Wall” and Duke Ellington’s classic “Caravan.”
“Caravan was one of the first songs I ever learned,” Aimée explains, “and it was time to inject some fiery gypsy soul into it.”
Alongside “Caravan,” Aimée covers the standard “Love Me or Leave Me.”
“I was inspired to do a version of ‘Love Me Or Leave Me’ after hearing Nina Simone’s recording,” Aimée says, “and then I found the Billie Holiday version, and was further inspired.”
Cyrille Aimée performs 9 pm Friday, Feb. 27, at Cozmic; $20 adv., $23 door. 21-plus.