Daily Download: "Doctor Monroe," Casey Dienel

Endearingly clunky jazz-pop from a 21-year-old pianist and singer

Published July 13, 2006 7:01AM (EDT)

It's a no-brainer to compare 21-year-old Casey Dienel to Nellie McKay, another blond youngster playing breezily sophisticated, piano-based jazz-pop. But where McKay's M.O. is to run neurotically hyperactive circles around the listener with her wit and eclecticism, all while smiling a Broadway smile of dazzling insincerity, Dienel's music has an endearing clunkiness to it, and her smiles, while more muted, appear genuine. "Doctor Monroe" is the opening track of her debut, "Wind-Up Canary," an amusing, surreal tale of an aging, eccentric drunk, set to appealingly blunt, Ellingtonian piano.

-- T.B.

By Salon Staff

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