On this latest edition of Some of My Best Friends Are…, following Ray's 1994 display of piano players and 1996's look at saxophonists, Brown addresses his infatuation with singers. It's no secret that between 1948 and 1952 Ray was married to one of the greatest ever—Ella Fitzgerald. Besides Ella, he's worked with a distinguished list of vocalists that includes Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra and Sarah Vaughan. "Singers trust me," says Ray. "I've been around a lot of singers in my time."
Brown has assembled a magnificent cast of vocalists, a mix of accomplished veterans and new stars, for this …Singers album like the Grammy Award-winning Dee Dee Bridgewater, the renown Marlena Shaw and the bluesy Etta Jones. Brown said of the newcomer who's not short on recognition, Diana Krall, "she's loaded with talent. She's continually improving…[and]…can sell a song. She can take an old song and make you love it. On top of that, she's a jazz piano player and that helps her keep great time when she sings. She's a true musician."
Some of My Best Friends Are…Singers represents yet another edition in a seemingly never-ending stream of cohesive, well-constructed and tightly orchestrated Ray Brown CDs. Each entry in Ray's prolific career attests to the bassist's ability as a band leader, an arranger, and one of the most musical and technically proficient bass players in jazz history.