174

Joel Forrester and People Like Us: Ever Wonder Why

Joel Roberts By

Sign in to view read count
Joel Forrester and People Like Us: Ever Wonder Why Joel Forrester has had a fascinating career. He studied piano with Thelonious Monk, scored early Andy Warhol films, wrote the theme for the popular NPR show Fresh Air, accompanied silent films at the Louvre, and spent years as a principal member of the fondly remembered Microscopic Septet.

He's also been the driving force between one of the liveliest bands in town, People Like Us, a quartet devoted to Forrester's quirkily intelligent compositions. Ever Wonder Why collects eleven new and not-so-new Forrester tunes, a typically eclectic assortment that highlights his winning mix of erudition and humor. For those familiar with Forrester, it's no surprise to find a novelty like "Bebop Cowpoke" alongside dedications to Mary Lou Williams and overlooked hard bop alto saxophonist Frank Strozier, as well as an earnest vocal choir reflecting on Sept. 11th.

As a pianist, Forrester is heavily influenced by Monk, along with Monk's stride and boogie-woogie predecessors. His primary foil is the marvelous baritone saxophonist Claire Daly, who shares his absurdist sensibility as well as his deep knowledge of the jazz vernacular. The fine rhythm section includes Dave Hofstra on bass and Ronnie Williams on drums, filling the chair held by the late, great Denis Charles.

This is serious music played by serious musicians who don't take themselves too seriously.

Track Listing: Ever Wonder Why; Bebop Cowpoke; Mother's Day; The Bubble; Bunny Boy; Serenade; As If You Were; Blue Mary Lou; Frank Strozier; No Question; Prayer for the Living

Personnel: Joel Forrester, piano; Claire Daly, baritone sax; Dave Hofstra, bass; Ronnie Williams, drums.

Title: Ever Wonder Why | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Ride Symbol


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Company I Keep CD/LP/Track Review The Company I Keep
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Ma De Re Sha CD/LP/Track Review Ma De Re Sha
by Geno Thackara
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Ask Seek Knock CD/LP/Track Review Ask Seek Knock
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Air and Light and Time and Space CD/LP/Track Review Air and Light and Time and Space
by John Eyles
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Eleven Cages CD/LP/Track Review Eleven Cages
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 27, 2017
Read Afro-Caribbean Mixtape CD/LP/Track Review Afro-Caribbean Mixtape
by Mark F. Turner
Published: June 27, 2017
Read "Lookin' East" CD/LP/Track Review Lookin' East
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 22, 2017
Read "Then and Now" CD/LP/Track Review Then and Now
by Duncan Heining
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Small Town" CD/LP/Track Review Small Town
by John Kelman
Published: May 19, 2017
Read "Chronicles" CD/LP/Track Review Chronicles
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 29, 2016
Read "Functioning Broke" CD/LP/Track Review Functioning Broke
by Doug Collette
Published: July 3, 2016
Read "Been Up So Long It Looks Like Down to Me: The Micros Play the Blues" CD/LP/Track Review Been Up So Long It Looks Like Down to Me: The Micros Play...
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 18, 2017

Smart Advertising!

Musician? Boost your visibility at All About Jazz and drive traffic to your website with our Premium Profile service.