“You Are There marks the second album on Justin Time for Hilary Kole, the New York based jazz singer (and pianist, arranger, and composer). Even though hundreds of singers are releasing what seems like hundreds of CDs these days, it’s fair to say that no vocalist – in either the classic or the contemporary era – has done an album like You Are There. This is a set of voice-and-piano duets, and though that fact by itself may call to mind Ella Fitzgerald’s famous meetings with Ellis Larkins and the iconic Tony Bennett-Bill Evans collaborations, no one has done what Hilary does here: she has teamed up with eleven different great pianists – each of them true legends of the keyboard – and recorded thirteen spontaneous piano-vocal duo tracks with these amazing musicians.
The project got underway when Hilary met the late keyboard colossus Oscar Peterson in 2005. She was, then as now, singing frequently at Birdland (then as always, “the Jazz Corner of the World,” and her New York base of operations) . The
two became friends, and on one set, to her astonishment, Peterson invited her to sing with his quartet . . .