Guitarist Rez Abbasi interprets nine of his own compositions on this album with a jazz organ trio and guests who explore the connection between East and West through improvised music. His impressions run happy, sad, light, dark, mysterious, open, free and easy. Abbasi retains the mystique of the classic jazz organ/guitar trio while coloring each selection with cultural ties from India and neighboring countries. He wields a sitar-guitar frequently for effect, and he devotes plenty of time toward expressing guitar language with his trio.
The tabla's effect on the program is to ensure that traditional world music ties it together throughout. Kiran Ahluwalia adds wordless vocals to three selections which emphasize her spine-tingling authority. Two saxophones and a hearty whistler color the title track with a mood of celebration, as the leader steers his ensemble through its mix from New York's melting pot.
Impressionism also plays a role in Abbasi's work. Through his tone poems, he captures the physical rhythmic stride of an elephant, the lasting quality of leather, the anxiety of growing older, the carefree spirit of life with a positive outlook, and the woes that are sometimes thrown upon us as firebrands for the blues.
Abbasi's guitar turns the music into an eloquent narrative as he communicates through the language of jazz. Cohesive in his approach, he weaves a strong thread around organ and drums to produce a contemporary message. With his guitar as the central figure in this recommended performance, Abbasi reveals a thorough understanding of how we're able to communicate freely without words.
Track Listing: Bazaar; Leather; Thin Elephant; Life Goes; You People Intro; You People; Mid-Life;
Hindu-Myth; Destiny Owes You.
I grew up listening to my father's Jazz records and listening to radio. My dad was a musician for many years as a vocalist, bassist and drummer. His two uncles played in the Symphony of Reggio Calabria back in Italy
I grew up listening to my father's Jazz records and listening to radio. My dad was a musician for many years as a vocalist, bassist and drummer. His two uncles played in the Symphony of Reggio Calabria back in Italy. So music and jazz specifically have been a part of me since I was born. I love and perform in all styles of music from around the world. Improvisation in jazz is what drew me in, and still does as well as other genres that feature improvisation. A group of great musicians expressing themselves as one is the hallmark of great jazz and in fact all great music.