229

John Ellis and Double-Wide: Dance Like There's No Tomorrow

Joel Roberts By

Sign in to view read count
John Ellis and Double-Wide: Dance Like There's No Tomorrow That's the low roar of a sousaphone—courtesy of New Orleans' Matt Perrine—you hear on the opening notes of "All Up in the Aisles," the first tune on Brooklyn-based saxophonist John Ellis' soulful Dance Like There's No Tomorrow. A North Carolina preacher's son who spent his formative musical years in the Crescent City before moving up north, Ellis remains a devotee of the New Orleans sound, although he and his band Double-Wide put a decidedly New York twist on it here.

With Perrine holding down the bottom on the unwieldy but powerful instrument, Gary Versace providing some deep church grooves on organ, Jason Marsalis ably manning the drums, plus Ellis' own expressive tenor sax, the group serves up an eclectic mix of modernist jazz that's both danceable and challenging. "Zydeco Clowns on the Lam," for example, with Versace doubling on accordion, is a lighthearted romp that deconstructs and reconfigures familiar bayou beats while "Trash Bash" offers an updated take on the New Orleans brass band tradition. Other highlights include the carnival-esque "Three-Legged Tango in Jackson Square" and the title cut, a no-holds-barred soul-jazz workout in the tradition of great tenor sax-organ pairings like Jimmy Smith and Stanley Turrentine.

While most of the music here has a boisterous edge (it's inspired by the land of "Laissez le bon temps roulez," after all) there are some poignant moments too, like "I Miss You Molly," Ellis' heartfelt tribute to the late Southern writer Molly Ivins and the evocatively titled ballad "Tattooed Teen Dances with Grandma."

Track Listing: All Up In The Aisles; Trash Bash; Dream And Mosh; I Miss You Molly; Three-Legged Tango In Jackson Square; Tattooed Teen Waltzes With Grandma; Zydeco Clowns On The Lam; Prom Song; Dance Like There's No Tomorrow.

Personnel: John Ellis: tenor and soprano saxophones, bass clarinet; Gary Versace: organ, accordion; Matt Perrine: sousaphone; Jason Marsalis: drums.

Title: Dance Like There's No Tomorrow | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Hyena Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Screen Sounds CD/LP/Track Review Screen Sounds
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 20, 2017
Read Rediscovered Ellington CD/LP/Track Review Rediscovered Ellington
by Troy Dostert
Published: August 20, 2017
Read The Bug CD/LP/Track Review The Bug
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 20, 2017
Read Sing Me Some Cry CD/LP/Track Review Sing Me Some Cry
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 20, 2017
Read Masters In Bordeaux CD/LP/Track Review Masters In Bordeaux
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 19, 2017
Read On Parade In Parede CD/LP/Track Review On Parade In Parede
by John Sharpe
Published: August 19, 2017
Read "Ma De Re Sha" CD/LP/Track Review Ma De Re Sha
by Geno Thackara
Published: June 28, 2017
Read "Honest Woman" CD/LP/Track Review Honest Woman
by James Nadal
Published: February 20, 2017
Read "Magnetic" CD/LP/Track Review Magnetic
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 27, 2017
Read "Like, Strange" CD/LP/Track Review Like, Strange
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 27, 2017
Read "So Beautiful, It Starts To Rain" CD/LP/Track Review So Beautiful, It Starts To Rain
by John Sharpe
Published: December 11, 2016
Read "Ida Lupino" CD/LP/Track Review Ida Lupino
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 15, 2016

Sponsor: JANA PROJECT | LEARN MORE  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.