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Today

As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Friday, May 18, 2012

CD Review: Clara Ponty "Into The Light"

Clara Ponty (piano and vocals) various musicians, and featuring Jean-Luc Ponty and Nigel Kennedy (violins) 
Lyrics mostly by Mike McGurk.  Produced and Arranged by Stuart Bruce and Clara Ponty.
(Review by Ann Alex.)
This is a hard-to-classify CD, it isn’t out and out jazz as there’s not a lot of improvising, (at least I think not) but it’s very pleasing to listen to and I suspect that it will grow in interest the more you play it. The songs would go well with a sub-titled French film, songs that sound more lightweight than they really are, sung in a light sweet voice, with every word crystal clear. To call the music rock or pop isn’t adequate, and the sleeve notes mention elements of pop, jazz, classical, Celtic, West African and folk, as well as influences of such as Debussy and Steve Reich, though I didn’t hear any hints of that latter avant-garde composer.
Clara Ponty, daughter of French jazz violinist Jean-Luc Ponty, is a skilled songstress and classically influenced pianist, blending her music beautifully with bass, drums, violins, guitar and even an occasional well modulated trumpet. Many of the lyrics are striking, such as:
Deep in the games of men
I see that sword and pen
Both claiming they have won
Shake hands and turn
Their backs again
The songs cover areas such as spiritual paths, aspects of modern life and relationships. Play this CD at your next party to please your guests, but when they’ve gone home, don’t fail to play it again and listen carefully, especially to Like A Dandelion, with the trumpet; the folk influenced The Path; Spinning Wheels (the music does actually spin) and the very jazzy instrumental Coeur a Coeur. I look forward to playing this again many times for enjoyment, not just so that I can write a review!
Ann Alex.

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