I’m embarrassed to admit that I don’t own any Shirley Horn albums. Now that she has sadly passed away, this is an oversight I intend to remedy.
For although I don’t own any of her music, I know her — the lifelong Washingtonian who was the inspiration and model for today’s Diana Krall style. Her slow, breathy take on ballads was evocative of small jazz clubs, she expanded time with her voice.
Unlike Ella Fitzgerald, Diana Krall, and others, her voice has what I am beginning to realize is a Washington accent — it sounds like home.
She was one of the greats, and even other greats knew it. And she was a Washingtonian, like me. She’ll be missed, but her grand and sometimes mysterious voice will resonate on.
[Washington Post Appreciation]