Jocelyn Gould: Elegant TravelerBy
Gould's guitar blends nicely with a core band of pianist Addison Frei, bassist George DeLancey and drummer Quincy Davis. Frei's brisk comping always leaves sufficient space for the leader. His fresh, inventive solo lines complement Gould's seven original compositions, a pair of Great American Songbook favorites and a Duke Ellington tune. One highlight is his witty reaction to Gould during the melody of "The Game Changer." DeLancey's bass contains an appealing authority which propels the band without throwing around too much weight. Davis's contributions include solid timekeeping and a propensity for dense, twisting fills.
This particular configuration of instruments is sufficient to sustain interest for an entire record. However, various combinations of three horns are added on four tracks. Tenor saxophonist Brandon Wright takes a memorable, straightforward turn on Gould's bebop by the numbers "Center Of The Universe." Trumpeter Anthony Stanco's rendition of a portion of Ellington's "All Too Soon" and solo are startling in their austerity and emotional honesty. Combined with Gould's rubato intro and partial statement of the melody, the track resembles an intimate tale told by two individuals.
Gould's solo interpretation of "It Might As Well Be Spring" honors Richard Rodgers's song, yet weighs a number of options and makes every detour count. A combination of single notes and chords thrive without the guidance of a rhythm section. Just when she seems firmly settled into the melody, Gould inevitably reveals another, inventive side of her personality, including one bold, blues-drenched interlude. As loose as things are, she always remains in control of the narrative. It is interesting to compare the track to the up-tempo take of another standard, "It's All Right With Me." Leaning into Frei's, DeLancey's and Davis's smart accompaniment, she sculpts Cole Porter's melody without an extraneous note or gesture.
Elegant Traveler bodes well for Jocelyn Gould's future as an instrumentalist, composer, bandleader and unaccompanied soloist.
It's All Right With Me; Kindling; Center Of The Universe; It Might As Well Be Spring; Change Of Plans; A Fleeting Moment; Argyle; In A Daydream; The Game Changer; All Too Soon.
Jocelyn Gould: guitar; Addison Frei: piano; George Delancy: bass, acoustic; Quincy Davis: drums.
Michael Dease: trombone (5, 7, 8); Antony Stanco: trumpet (5, 7, 10); Brandon Wright: tenor saxophone (3, 7).
Title: Elegant Traveler | Year Released: 2020 | Record Label: Posi-Tone Records
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About Jocelyn Gould
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