“It’s a very personal album...”

Jacqui new
Jacqui new

FOR every artist, creating new music is a labour of love, and a demanding practice, writes Sammy Jones.

But for Jacqui Dankworth, piecing together the album It Happens Quietly, was more demanding than most.

She began working on the delivery with her father, celebrated Jazz man Sir John Dankworth, and wrapped up recording following his passing in 2010.

“It was something that had long been spoken about, but when his health started failing, I knew that it was a now or never situation,” Jacqui says.

Work was started in the front room of the Dankworth home.

Standards including A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square sit alongside new produce like the title track It Happens Quietly, with music by John, and lyrics courtesy of Buddy Kaye, and the father and daughter co-write, The Man.

They are but three beautiful songs on an album featuring 12 gems by a lady whose musical credibility in her own right was established long ago, and with John and Dame Cleo Laine as parents, she learned from the best.

How easy was it to pull that tracklisting together though?

“We did it with difficulty,” Jacqui admits, “I made lists, dad suggested songs, mum suggested songs and then dad vetoed some of them....it took a time.

“It was easier for me though, since I realised he wasn’t well.

“I can be quite stubborn, and so could he – we both have strong wills, but I let that go and didn’t argue.

“It was easy working together.”

Following the first stage of recording, work ceased as John nursed Cleo back to health following an operation.

The King and Queen of British jazz then stepped out on tour in their own right, before John was taken ill.

It Happens Quietly has therefore been a long time coming and is a release that will strike a chord not only for its delicate beauty, but also for that collaborative effort between her and her late father, to whom the release is dedicated .

“It is a completely different record for me,” Jacqui admits, “I’ve never done an album with strings on it before, and it is also a very personal album.”

It is a record deserving of a big audience, and based on talent alone, It Happens Quietly will surely reach the audience it deserves.

“A lot of mum and dad’s fans support me now, which is nice, and I am hoping that this album will reach beyond.”

And it already has the seal of approval from another special lady.

“I think mum likes it,” Jaqui ventures, “She said she found it very moving...”

It Happens Quietly is released on August, 15, 2011.