Boris and Tony - "Unforgettable"

(Ground 11 Productions)
Boris and Tony

Review by Anders McGraw

Guitar vocal duos aren't unusual, but they are rare, due to the fact that more instrumentation is generally needed to make the music presentation sufficiently varied and interesting to the listener. Fortunately, in the case of Boris and Tony, Venzuelan-born nylon-string guitar master Boris Arratia is able to obtain the ear of the audience with his command of juicy Latin jazz fills that take care of the ryhthmic and harmonic components of the music without need of bass and drums, and provide an intricate framework for his vocal partner - Tony Sconyers.

Sconyers has a deep, polished voice and a smooth, classy approach to singing. He has been compared to such singers as Nat King Cole and Johnny Hartman, but his romantic smoothness doesn't approach their sheen and instead displays more humanity in the texture of his voice - an aspect that is quite welcome. The singer has a healthy respect for the songs and their tradition and it shows in his tasteful recounting of them.

The songs included on this recording range from standards like "Satin Doll" and "Nature Boy" (a nice take on the oft-covered treasure), Cole Porter's "I've Got You Under My Skin" and Duke Ellington's "Caravan" (maybe my favorite piece on the CD) to Brazilian classics like "Mas Que Nada" and Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Triste." There is an interesting medley of "Darkness on the Delta" into "Gergia on my Mind" that works well. But the duo also visit modern popular tunes and their versions of Stevie Wonder's "You Are the Sunshine of My Life," as well as their Latin-altered versions of the Lennon-McCartney songbook ("Michelle," "Yesterday" and an instrumental take on "Norwegian Wood") are fun and I am happy to report - unforgettable.

Check out Boris & Tony at their website

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