As the days become colder and shorter, sometimes we need music that gets us into a certain mood, or a certain vibe. Little Candy Heart by up and coming jazz singer Sarah Marie Young does just that, as her music allows us to get away and forget our troubles, just like a great musician should do. Sarah’s career kicked off in 2011 when she participated in the Shure Montreux Vocal Competition judged by music industry veteran Quincy Jones. After winning the competition, Sarah spent a week in the Swiss mountains at Balik Farm Studios to record an album of original material. Young’s latest offering opens with “Brighter Days” a soft mix of jazz and pop, and as Sarah sings over a subtle beat and quiet bass line, we quickly realize that Sarah is a talented vocalist who is original and a pleasure to listen to. Sounding similar in many ways to another up and coming jazz musician Spencer Day, Young’s music has an inviting nature that pulls us into her songs and has us engrossed until the last notes of the record. By the time “Brighter Days” ends we wonder why she was not discovered sooner.
Next up is the album’s title track and it has very much the same vibe as its predecessor. Using a subtle accompaniment of guitar, drums, and piano, Young does not need to have a lot of instruments backing her up to make her voice sound appealing. The most notable aspect of this particular track is that we get a taste of Sarah’s vocal range, as she uses her voice to the fullest extent to demonstrate to listeners that her talent is truly authentic. “What’s That Love” is a relaxing and peaceful tune that will be a hit with smooth jazz fans as the track allows us to wrap ourselves up in Young’s voice and really focus on the intricacies of the album. “Work It Out” is a simple track that has a very minimalist sound, most likely to showcase Sarah and her voice. Little Candy Heart ends with “Be With You”, a beautiful tune that features other vocalists in addition to Sarah to round out the song’s sound. Sounding like a choir, the inclusion of other vocalists adds a pretty quality to the song and gives it multiple layers of sound.
Little Candy Heart is an album that is the perfect addition to your music collection, even if you are only a casual jazz fan.