Mrs. Costello flies in

Despite her famous husband’s boycott, jazzy songstress Diane Krall is still bringing her silky smooth sounds to Israel.

Diane Krall311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Diane Krall311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Can you imagine the kind of dinner conversations that Diana Krall and her husband Elvis Costello must have been having the last couple months? “You know, Di, there are those who consider Israel to be an apartheid state for the way in which they’ve for years systematically discriminated against the Palestinians. Could you pass the tandoori chicken this way, luv?” “Oh Elvis, how many times can you keep bringing this up? I’m just going to play a concert there, it’s been booked for months.And you know, thanks so much for changing your mind midstream and canceling your shows there. I’m probably going to have to hide out in my hotel room, guilty by association. Here’s your damn tandoori.”“Don’t be cross, luv,” coos Costello, breaking into his version of “She” as the couple’s twin sons, Dexter and Frank, clap along. Krall rolls her eyes as she takes a bite and thinks: “I knew I should have married John Lydon.”
The public brouhaha caused by her husband’s pre-Flotilla boycott of Israel may have something to do with the media silence imposed by the celebrated jazzy pianist/vocalist Krall ahead of her performance on August 4th at the Ra’anana Amphitheater. But maybe it’s because throughout her Grammy-winning, sterling career, she’s always let the music do the talking.
After attending the Berklee College of Music in the early 1980s to perfect her piano skills, the 43-year-old Canadian took the advice of a teacher in Los Angeles, pianist Jimmy Rowles, to focus on her singing as well. That proved to be wise counsel, since Krall’s sultry vocals had become her signature by the time she signed to legendary jazz label Verve in 1999 and her career exploded after six years of incremental success.
She went on to win a Grammy for best jazz vocal for her debut Verve album When I Look in Your Eyes, the first jazz disc to be nominated for Album of the Year in 25 years. The hits kept on coming – 2002’s “The Look of Love” was a chart topper, and in 2004, she collaborated with her then-new husband Costello on six songs for The Girl in the Other Room.
The birth of their twin sons was marked on 2006’s From This Moment On, which leads us to her latest album, the steamy bossa nova-tinged Quiet Nights, which she described as “my love letter to my husband – just an intimate, romantic album. It’s not coy.
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It’s not ‘peel me a grape,’ little girl stuff. I feel this album’s very womanly – like you’re lying next to your lover in bed whispering this in their ear,” While the husband stays home with the kids, Krall has been singing these seductive songs throughout the month of July while headlining some of Europe’s top jazz festivals, including Switzerland's Montreux Jazz Festival, Rotterdam's North Sea Jazz and France's Jazz a Vienne. Accompanying Krall’s bewitching piano and vocals on the tour are guitarist Anthony Wilson, bassist Robert Hurst and drummer Karriem Riggins.
She’ll be arriving in Israel a day after performing in Beirut, another reason why she, unlike other family members, may not be too enthusiastic about spouting any political viewpoints. Better to say it with music.