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Bebop Spoken There

Brian Harvey: "The exciting day arrived and we [as under age school boys] snuck into the [pub's] rehearsal room, sat awkwardly to attention on hard chairs in a row facing the band and heard our first - very loud - live jazz. What an occasion that was - we even drank beer because we understood that's what jazz people did and that's what the band were drinking." - (Just Jazz June 2020)

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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.

Monday, January 28, 2013

CD Review: Wave Mechanics Union: Further To Fly


(Review by Ann Alex).
Would  you  like  to  hear  the Paul Simon song Further To Fly with  a  tricky  latin  beat, sax cutting across, sung by a sweet-voiced  woman who knows how to express the lyrics?  Or King Crimson’s  Heartbeat,  with  fully  explored  rhythms  on  the bassoon;  or  Tom  Wait’s  Swordfishtrombone, a wonderfully witty  black   comedy  narrative  about a war veteran?  These and   many  other  delights  await you  on this CD.  Then there’s the saxophone solo on a jazz version  of  Wondrous  Stories;  the  catchy melody of Mark Knopler’s Your Latest Trick; or Slow  Like  Honey,  played  with additional strings which flow down the tune, just like honey.
This CD came about as a project by two arrangers, Ryan Fraley and Ralph Johnson, who are usually up for hire by clients.  They decided that they would hire the musicians instead so that they could work in collaboration, arranging progressive rock and pop classics in a jazz style, and the result is this very listenable CD.  Most tracks involve vocals by Lydia McAdams, giving us sensitive interpretations of the songs, and guest vocalist Jon Anderson of rock group Yes.  Each track was chosen by a musician involved in the project, and their comments quoted in the CD notes show a deep understanding of the music, for instance, about Further To Fly  ‘I was attracted to the unusual and clever syncopations in Further To Fly’.
The CD is good value, 14 tracks lasting just over an hour, with a well thought out order of songs, beginning with Further To Fly, which this group of musicians surely has, and rounding off with the Queen number The Show Must Go On, in which the singer builds up the emotion without going over the top.  It was difficult not to shed a tear when listening to this song, about the basic loneliness of being a performer.  I predict that the show will go on for Wave Mechanics Union.
To see a slideshow of photos and names of the 30 or so musicians involved, go to the website www.progjazz.com  Highly recommended that you have a look.
Wave Mechanics Union: Further To Fly was issued late last year on the HX Music LLC label.  
Ann Alex

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