With a voice that wails like a horn and whispers like the snake...she's finally claiming her place in the pantheon of 21st-century jazz divas. "Romance in the Dark," from Strictly Romancin', shows how strong and sexy Russell can sound.
— Marc Silver, NPR Song of The Day
her fourth solo CD, "Strictly Romancin'," a deliciously diverse collection that travels from sly blues and glorious gospel to rollicking jump blues and spirited swing. Her mom joins her on a duet of Sister Rosetta Tharpe's "He's All I Need." Top-shelf stuff.
— Jon Bream, Minneapolis Tribune
Picking favorites isn't easy, but some songs are almost impossible to shake after hearing them so evocatively arranged. Retro excursions are seldom as much fun as listening to Russell reinvigorate 'I'm Checkin' Out, Goom'bye’
— The Washington Post (Editor’s Pick)
It's a good bet that the acclaimed Ms. Russell will charm the socks off of old-school jazz fans with this set.
— Duane Verh, Jazz & Blues Report
Most striking of all is the disc's one gospel selection, "He's All I Need", written and originally recorded by Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Marie Knight. Russell delivers it here as a duet with her mother...It's one of the simplest and most sincere gospel performances to be captured on disc in recent times.
— Lee Hildebrand, Living Blues
A truly remarkable CD...Catherine Russell is superb!
— Jazz Monthly
I've listened to CDs from Catherine Russell before --- even gave good reviews to her two previous discs on World Village. I shouldn't be surprised by the quality of her music and the power of her jazzy, soulful voice, but I still wasn't prepared for how Ms. Russell's latest, Strictly Romancin', would bowl me over. What a great album!
— Bill Mitchell, Blues Bytes
Strictly Romancin’ is another varied and marvelous recording by Catherine Russell. Those who have her prior albums likely have been waiting for more from her and will not be disappointed. Others will discover just how wonderful a performer she is.
— Ron Weinstock, In A Blue Mood
Strictly Romancin’, her fourth release, is a delightful mixed bag of jazz and blues numbers. With the help of musical director/guitarist/banjoist/arranger, Matt Munisteri, Russell breathes new life into some classic and rare compositions.
— Robbie Gerson, Audiophile Audition
Russell sings in a marvelously full, rich alto and hangs just a hint of a blue scrim over her cheerful, straight-shooting, girl-next-door innocence. Her haunting version of "No More," with its '50s-modern arrangement, is easily as good as Billie Holiday's. It's not a big deal, but it's worth mentioning that Russell is black, since vintage song excavation has been primarily a white obsession. But like the Carolina Chocolate Drops with the blues, Russell is a delightful addition to the party.
— Paul de Barros, The Seattle Times
Catherine Russell is one of the most exciting talents among new jazz singers.
— Jeff Simon, Buffalo News
a winner from first cut to last...doesn't get any better than this.
— Jamie O'Neill, Chico News and Review
one of the classic voices in song.
— Jim White, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
When Russell goes classic, it's a natural thing, a refreshing thing, a necessary thing and yes, a romantic thing.
— Jim Beal Jr., San Antonio Express-News
Backed by a roomy group of musicians, Russell is fun and sexy as her romantic soul drifts from New Orleans, to Paris, to Harlem
— Jeff Spevak, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Top Chart Positions:
No. 6 Billboard Jazz Chart
No. 5 Billboard Traditional Jazz Chart
No. 1 iTunes Jazz Chart
February, May 2012
No. 1 Amazon Bestselling Jazz Album
No. 1 Jazzweek Chart