Betty Carter pressed the jazz singer's art to the limits, in the recasting of standard melodies, in her creative scat, and in the ability to blend her sound with different instruments. Her voice was a special instrument, with an airy flutelike quality in every register, and her singing could be playful or passionate. On this 1987 recording, Carter's voice is mixed right down amid the instruments and each song emerges as a collective creation, a sustained work with Carter at the helm, inspiring her associates. Tenor saxophonist Don Braden blends memorably with Carter on the ballads "The Man I Love" and "Make It Last," while the singer's gifts as a tutor and talent scout are confirmed here by the presence of two outstanding young pianists, Stephen Scott and Benny Green. --Stuart Broomer
This album won her the 1988 Grammy Award for Best Jazz Vocal Performance, Female.
Personnel: Betty Carter (vocals); Don Braden (tenor saxophone); Stephen Scott, Benny Green (piano); Michael Bowie, Ira Coleman (bass); Winard Harper, Lewis Nash, Troy Davis (drums).
Recorded at Clinton Recording and Mediasound, New York, New York.
1. "Look What I Got!" (Betty Carter) – 5:41
2. "That Sunday, That Summer" (Joe Sherman, George David Weiss) – 4:51
3. "The Man I Love" (George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin) – 7:28
4. "All I Got" (Diane Cole) – 4:40
5. "Just Like the Movies" (Time) (Carter) – 4:20
6. "Imagination" (Johnny Burke, Jimmy Van Heusen) – 4:23
7. "Mr. Gentleman" (Sequel to "Tight") (Carter) – 2:40
8. "Make It Last" (Bob Haymes) – 6:00
9. "The Good Life" (Sacha Distel, Jack Reardon) – 6:58