Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved reader experience across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

174

Joel Forrester and People Like Us: Ever Wonder Why

Joel Roberts By

Sign in to view read count
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 Roppongi CD/LP/Track Review Roppongi
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 19, 2018
Read Is Life Long? CD/LP/Track Review Is Life Long?
by Mark Corroto
Published: January 19, 2018
Read Contra la indecision CD/LP/Track Review Contra la indecision
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 19, 2018
Read Vessel in Orbit CD/LP/Track Review Vessel in Orbit
by Don Phipps
Published: January 19, 2018
Read Pulse/Quartet CD/LP/Track Review Pulse/Quartet
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: January 19, 2018
Read OR CD/LP/Track Review OR
by Geno Thackara
Published: January 18, 2018
Read "Karoujite" CD/LP/Track Review Karoujite
by John Eyles
Published: June 21, 2017
Read "Landed in Brooklyn" CD/LP/Track Review Landed in Brooklyn
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 3, 2017
Read "Afloat" CD/LP/Track Review Afloat
by Gareth Thompson
Published: November 25, 2017
Read "In the Still of the Night" CD/LP/Track Review In the Still of the Night
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: May 22, 2017
Read "Get 'Em" CD/LP/Track Review Get 'Em
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 24, 2017
Read "The Colours Suite" CD/LP/Track Review The Colours Suite
by Mark Sullivan
Published: June 29, 2017