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JC and The Jazz Hoppers: Chillin' At Home

Ernest Barteldes By

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You realize that Australian-born guitarist Jason Campbell has decided to do something completely unpretentious but also interesting when first spinning Chillin' at Home. It begins with a laid-back (could it be any other way?) version of Bobby McFerrin's "Don't Worry, Be Happy, in which the guitarist exchanges solos with B3 keyboardist Col Nolan. Later he does a beautiful extended rendition of Jesse Harris' "Don't Know Why (the unstoppable Norah Jones hit that no one could escape from a few years back), taking advantage of its folkie, romantic feel to take it in another direction.

The originals also catch your attention—the fast-paced (albeit very brief) "Fresh Roast features drummer Evan Mannell, Campbell feeding from the energy of the interaction. On "Aria 4 Daria, the trio (with drummer Andrew Dickenson) takes a more conventional approach, with Nolan providing Campbell the right background for his improvisations and responding with a few smart riffs and referencing Ellington's "Satin Doll in his solo.

Campbell takes advantage of the quick pace of "My Delight, demonstrating smart chops throughout the tune. Nolan sounds completely in sync here, delivering satisfying responses to the guitar—during the organ solo, Campbell plays a subtle bass line that enriches Nolan's footwork (there isn't a bassist on the CD). No organ-and-guitar disc would be complete without a standard blues tune; another original number, the easygoing "Anytime, Anyplace has a refreshing melodic tone that serves as a template for the guitarist to use chords and also to let the individual notes sustain a little longer.

Chillin' At Home is a disc for those who appreciate jazz from a more linear direction that does not fall into the soft-jazz category—adventurous without being too challenging.

Track Listing: Don't worry, be happy; Fresh Roast; Don't Know Why; Aria 4 Daria; Our Delight; Anytime, Anyplace; Our Delight (alt. take).

Personnel: Jason Campbell: guitar; Col Nolan: Hammond B3; Andrew Dickenson: drums; Evan Mannell: drums (2).

Title: Chillin' At Home | Year Released: 2007


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