After American Idol

Katharine McPhee reaches back to her childhood for sound of new album


Katharine McPhee will release her fifth album, and first in two years, next month.

Katharine McPhee will release her fifth album, and first in two years, next month.

Katharine McPhee is preparing to release her fifth album since American Idol.

And it’s going to be quite a change of pace from the very good but largely ignored pop album she released in 2015.

Suffice to say “Hysteria,” her first album since 2010, didn’t create much hysteria.

This time around she’ll serve up an album covering 10 jazz standards. She served up the first sample Friday with the release of “Night and Day,” a song recorded by a one point by Cole Porter, Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald.

It also happens to be a song with which Katharine became quite familiar long before her run on Season 5 of American Idol.

“‘Night and Day’ is the song consistently sung by my mother as I was growing up,” Katharine told, which premiered the single. “My mother by day was and still is a vocal coach and by night was performing constantly as a cabaret singer. Therefore, the slow torchy songs from the 30s and 40s were embedded in me.”

At this point in her career, Katharine is better known as an actress than singer. She’s followed up a critically-praised role on NBC’s “Smash” by playing the role of Paige Dineen on the CBS series “Scorpion.”

Why an album of jazz standards?

“I wanted to do a record people could make out to,” the 33-year-old told “It’s the most romantic music in the world. All of the songs tell stories. That’s why I love them so much.”

The album will be called “I Fall in Love Too Easily” — another song recorded by Sinatra — and is available for pre-order. It’s due out Nov. 17.

Check out more about Kat on her Facebook page, including upcoming shows. She’ll be filming a PBS special at a concert in Chicago this week.

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