The Colpix Singles
Few vocalists can match the ageless power of Nina Simone, with her unyielding raw voice and flawless melodies. The release of The Colpix Singles, two discs of remastered versions of some of Simone’s work with Colpix Records, underlines the point. It starts with “Chilly Winds Don’t Blow,” a buoyant horn-led shuffle with Simone bellowing in a slightly lower timbre than usual. “Since My Love Has Gone” (1960), with its sweeping orchestration and canned choral harmonies cradling Simone’s vibrato, nicely capture its era. Her classic rendition of Gershwin’s “Summertime” is lovely in its sultry simplicity, with soft percussion and twinkling piano aligned with Simone’s effortless performance. Though they’re all good, the best moments in the collection are the simple ones, such as her rendition of “Cotton Eyed Joe,” a slow, sparse, stunning performance that bears little resemblance to typical fiddle-heavy line-dance versions of the traditional American folk song.