All or Nothing
Having concentrated much of her career on jazz education, vocalist Trineice Robinson is stepping out of the halls of academia with her debut recording All or Nothing (4RM Music Productions) which will be released in August. The results were certainly worth the wait, as the Princeton faculty member dives into a repertoire of jazz standards, gospel, soul and R&B, backed by stellar musicians throughout. Robinson nods to major influences such as Nancy Wilson (“Saving Your Love for Me”) and Carmen McRae (“I Mean You”), interprets Great American Songbook gems and delves into timeless classics by Wayne Shorter and Marvin Gaye. Hailing from “generations of clergy” in her native Oakland, California, Robinson is deeply anchored in gospel music, as is immediately evident in her read of Duke Ellington’s “Come Sunday.” The track begins with a lilting and lovely intro by pianist Cyrus Chestnut, Robinson’s sole accompanist on the prayerful number, with both musicians’ church roots fully on display. Robinson makes a powerful, heartfelt plea for God to “see my people through,” a prayer that no doubt continues to resonate decades after Ellington recorded it with Mahalia Jackson at the height of the Civil Rights era. Chestnut’s tender, lyrical piano and Robinson’s poignant contralto cry combine for a quite moving performance.