Review by Brad Walseth
Young up-and-coming cabaret singer, Dane Vannatter's third release, "Double Standards" captures sheer delight in a bottle. Fans of male vocal jazz will thrill to this young man's gorgeous voice. Winner of the 2006 Bistro Award for Outstanding Vocalist by the critics of BackStage in New York, Vannatter has graced the stages of such venues as Sardi's, The Metropolitan Room and Danny's Skylight Room.
On "Double Standards," continues to mine the songbooks of the great classic songwriters of American history like Irving Berlin, Stephen Sondheim, Johnny Mercer, Hoagy Carmichael, Rodgers and Hart and Duke Ellington, while bringing in contemporary tunes as well. As such, Vannatter's shimmering tone and soaring voice opens the album with Sondheim's "Move On," and a clever merger of "Give Me the Simple Life" with "Let's Face the Music and Dance," before presenting Bobby Caldwell's soulful R&B hit "What You Won't Do For Love." Throughout, the singer shows remarkable command and range and a true feel for the material.
Backed by high-level crew of musicians (pianist Bill Duffy and multi-horn player Kenny Wentzel, along with drummer George Ferrell and bassist Dave Landoni form the core band), Vannatter swings like crazy on snappy tunes like "You're Driving Me Crazy" and "My Heart Stood Still," and floats gracefully on showtunes like Sondheim's "Loving You," but he seems utterly at his best on a heartfelt ballad like Gordon Park's "Don't Misunderstand." Vannatter seems poised to take the cabarets of the world by storm. His smooth and romantic vocals are perfect for wine and candlelight and will appeal to lovers of vocalists like Harry Connick Jr., Mel Torme and Tony Bennett. This young man is to be commended both for his sublime vocals, but also for also keeping these great American standards alive for a new generation to discover and enjoy.