Friday, March 28, 2008

Time for that BJ

Headed to Chicago's Orchestra Hall to hear the Joshua Redman Trio with Branford Marsalis tonight and been listening to their stuff all week.

Today it's Branford's Romare Bearden Revealed. I'm Slappin' Seventh Avenue brings to mind the word jaunty. Branford's soprano (he plays tenor, too) sounds a lot like a clarinet. Jungle Blues starts out making me think Ragtime and quickly morphs into a trad, Jelly Roll Morton-like New Orleans thing, albeit modernized, again with the clarinet-sounding soprano (tell me he's not channeling Sidney Bechet). Brothers Wynton and Delfeayo do some talking on the trumpet and 'bone.

The program is diverse, Seabreeze a Latinized slow dance number; Wynton's J Moood a blues-based advanced post bop piece in the manner of Miles Davis' second great quintet; B's Paris Blues with a Django feel and amusing solos and interplay between Branford and Doug Wamble, who goes it all alone in kind of a Piedmont style on Autumn Lamp. I think of Laughin' & Talkin' (with Higg) as abstract bebop. The duet between Branford and Harry Connnick Jr. (forget his singing, he's a boffo pianist) on James P. Johnson's Carolina Shout is a blisteringly fast minor classic.

It occurs to me that every time I put this on I find something else to enjoy in it.

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