148

Bill Frisell at The Knitting Factory

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Submitted on behalf of Bob Margolis

As part of the Knitting Factory's 1997 Jazz Festival, titled The Texaco New York Jazz festival, a long-time Knit fav was around to kick the festivities off with a well-attended bang.
Bill Frisell, a highly unique guitarist and member of many legendary groups, including Paul Motian's "Units" was in performance this evening with both his quartet and by himself. The quartet featured a very unusual mixture of instruments, including Curtis Fowlkes on Trombone, Ron Miles on trumpet, Eyvind Kang on violin and Frisell on guitar. Starting from a very simple progression strummed on his six-string, Frisell was able to show how some very dense, complicated music can be stripped down to an accessible level, then brought back to a highly sophisticated musical sphere. The value in this type of arranging and playing is that the audience is literally picked up and brought along on a conceptual and musical ride, resulting in a very pleasing and fulfilling experience for all. A favorite aspect of Frisell's writing is the art of presenting a slight musical motif, or fragment, putting it away and then reminding the listener of it at different tempos and locations within the piece. The interplay and listening abilities exhibited by all members of this highly listenable group should be required listening for all who play improvisational music.
When Frisell addressed the sold-out audience at the beginning of his solo performance, he coyly said "I am not prepared for this... do you mind if I just play some tunes?." The Seattle native then proceeded to put on a clinic as to how to play standards without making them sound tired, dated or boring. Featuring a great version of There is No Greater Love, Frisell was able to make use of his signature sound, remain true to the tune's beautiful melody line and include all sorts of unexpected dips and turns along the way. A splendid performance, and one that hopefully will lead to perhaps a live CD featuring what this listener heard on a hot Tuesday night at the good 'ole Knit.


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Diane Schuur at Birdland Live Reviews Diane Schuur at Birdland
by Tyran Grillo
Published: November 20, 2017
Read Pat Metheny at Belfast Waterfront Live Reviews Pat Metheny at Belfast Waterfront
by Ian Patterson
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Crosscurrents at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor Live Reviews Crosscurrents at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: November 15, 2017
Read "ECM Showcase at NYC Winter Jazzfest 2017" Live Reviews ECM Showcase at NYC Winter Jazzfest 2017
by Tyran Grillo
Published: January 22, 2017
Read "Bray Jazz Festival 2017" Live Reviews Bray Jazz Festival 2017
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 9, 2017
Read "November Music 2016" Live Reviews November Music 2016
by Henning Bolte
Published: December 13, 2016
Read "Mike Westbrook at Bury St. Edmunds Festival" Live Reviews Mike Westbrook at Bury St. Edmunds Festival
by Duncan Heining
Published: June 14, 2017
Read "Electric Hot Tuna at Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center" Live Reviews Electric Hot Tuna at Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center
by Doug Collette
Published: November 27, 2016

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Please support out sponsor