This enjoyable and engaging album--guitarist Lee Jones's second as a leader--aims to throw some much-needed wrinkles in to the smoothness of so much contemporary jazz. That's not really newsworthy, of course, but hardly anyone thus far has succeeded in doing it so successfully. While so many of today's new breed of jazz guitarists are either trying to forge their uniqueness into some been-there-done-that formula or regurgitate the sound or style of a guitar hero of the past, Jones strives to take jazz guitar back to the place of creativity and invention it held before its mellifluous tones landed ...read more
If a musical career spans a period of thirty years, there's bound to be ups and downs along the way. Rickie Lee Jones has always insisted on making her own choices, sometimes baffling her critics with yet another puzzle to work out. Here the Duchess of Coolsville combines her multiple talents as an artist, songwriter and producer with a little help from musical friends like Jon Brion, Bill Frisell, Brian Swartz, Pete Thomas and Reggie McBride.
The album opens with a tribute to Jones' daughter, Charlotte. Like many of the other tracks, Wild Girl" is an unfinished song ...read more
British guitarist Lee Jones emerges from a new generation of jazzers steeped in a digital age that makes record labels, recording contracts and even CDs evermore useless. Rather than woodshedding, as many talented jazz soloists have done before him, getting lost in academia or taking once lucrative studio jobs that probably don't exist anymore, this young guitarist roars out onto the playing field determined to make it on his own. On this, his self-assured debut, Jones shows he's got the muscle to make it happen.He's certainly got the chops. It's as if he's studied every guitarist who ever ...read more
Meet Carolyn Lee Jones: In my own words, Have You Met Miss Jones?
Born and raised in Nebraska, one day I hopped on a bus with 21 suitcases and boxes, $200, my best friend and went to Dallas, Texas! My first career was in retailing as a buyer traveling the world. My travels gave me opportunities to perform and to meet other musicians.
Always wanting to be a professional singer, a few years ago, I decided it was now or never. So I threw myself a birthday party hired a six-piece band--two gown changes--and sang as the main ...read more
Rickie Lee Jones and Tom Waits have been prominent figures in the world of pop since their emergence in the mid-1970s. While the folksy Jones has had an eclectic career, her shrill vocals have likely turned off as many listeners as those who enjoy her work, though her early 1990s CD Pop Pop (Geffen, 1991) showed that she was adventurous enough to tackle standards. Waits emerged looking like a denizen of Skid Row and sounded like one as well, particularly to those exposed to him during his puzzling tour as an opening solo act for Frank Zappa in 1974. But ...read more
Rickie Lee Jones is a pure artist. She’s not a dyed-in-the-wool jazzer, though improvisation is an important part of what she does (more than many jazz singers I’ve heard). She’s part poet, part beatnik. She’s part coquette and part of her just tells what she observes in life.
(Art... n’est pas?)
What she really is, is just Rickie Lee Jones. Period. She has a sound and an approach that is all her own, whether it’s a jazz standard — of which she’s recorded many — a folksy song, a ballad, or whether she chooses to rock out. Her vocals can ...read more
Live records are perhaps the most precarious of balancing acts. For too many artists, ventures into unplugged territory prove to be nothing more than overproduced exercises in self-indulgence. On the contrary, Live At Red Rocks, the most recent release from Rickie Lee Jones, is a refreshingly satisfying jaunt into this well-traveled arena.
In contrast to her 1995 live release Naked Song s, Red Rocks is not about showcasing Jones as a stripped down, acoustic singer-songwriter. But rather it is about showcasing her as a well-rounded and energized whole performer. Her latest finds Jones backed by a stellar band and, thus, ...read more