J’ai Deux Amours

Dee Dee Bridgewater

Formidable veteran jazz singer Dee Dee Bridgewater has accumulated many well-deserved honors in her colorful career. She won a Grammy in 1998 for the CD Dear Ella, her tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, a Tony award for her 1975 Broadway role as Glinda in The Wiz, and was named in 1999 Honorary Ambassador to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization to name a few. Add Bridgewater’s latest CD (her 16th), J’ai Deux Amours, to her list of noteworthy accomplishments. Bridgewater, who splits her time between the United States and France, offers us a collection almost 10 years in the making of French love songs sure to make one long to be sipping a café au lait with a lover in a Parisian sidewalk café. The title song pays homage to another female African-American chanteuse, the legendary Josephine Baker, who, like Bridgewater, was embraced by the French for her talents. Bridgewater’s bilingual take on “Mon Homme (My Man)” lacks the masochistic vulnerability of the Billie Holiday version, replacing it with strength and sass. Her supporting quartet—notably Frenchman Marc Berthoumieux on accordions—is equally excellent.