"Helen Sung has worked with jazz luminaries like Clark Terry, Wayne Shorter and Terri Lyne Carrington, but her latest project might end up being her most celebrated to date. Sung With Words merges jazz and poetry together to make a multi-movement work that explores themes of the human condition: love, betrayal, wonder, melancholy and mystery."
– Suraya Mohamed, NPR Music - First Listen
"A music-and-poetry project in the truest sense, with pianist Helen Sung and poet Dana Gioia in close collaboration, it branches beyond that core, with additional vocals by Carolyn Leonhart, Christie Dashiell, Jean Baylor and Charenee Wade. The first-rate band includes Ingrid Jensen on trumpet and John Ellis on saxophones and bass clarinet, among others, and Sung's writing is assertive and grounded."
– Nate Chinen, WBGO 88.3 "Take Five"
"Sung does admirable work here, crafting arrangements of great diversity and conviction"
– Giovanni Russonello, DownBeat Magazine (Hot Box Review – 4 stars)
"...but what is undeniable is that this was piano playing at a quite unbelievably jaw-dropping level."
– Sebastian Scotney, London Jazz News
"There is a hierarchy of great piano versions of "Never Let Me Go," with Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett at the top. Sung is now on the list"
– Thomas Conrad, JazzTimes Editor’s Pick
Joseph Boggess Photography
Photography by Kathy Villacorta, Wardrobe by Vivienne Tam