211

Mundell Lowe: Guitar Moods

David Rickert By

Sign in to view read count
Mundell Lowe: Guitar Moods
For fans of jazz guitar, the trio setting holds a special appeal. Not the familiar Nat King Cole style trio of guitar, piano, and bass, but rather the format where the guitarist is accompanied by bass and drums only, a situation which forces him to use chords and single note soloing to fill up the space.

Mundell Lowe ups the ante even more by playing a program consisting entirely of ballads, some of which are taken at a virtually tempoless pace. Lowe keeps things simple, employing basic chord shapes and sticking close to the melody in a style that bears a strong resemblance to Johnny Smith in his use of chords to carry the melody. The rhythm section is given little to do rather than provide atmosphere, and there are entire passages where they might as well have left the room as little as they play.

Lowe delights in all the possibilities of the open setting, letting his chords hang in the air to achieve a languid atmosphere. Maybe the oboe, English horn, and flute solos are a tad too sentimental, and perhaps a few mid-tempo tunes would have broken up the monotony that inevitably sets in with a project of this type, but there's still a great deal of beautiful guitar work here.

There's nothing like the satisfaction of discovering an obscure album that turns out to be great. Mundell Lowe has never really been given enough credit as a musician, but Guitar Moods is a wonderful entry in the field of jazz guitar recordings.

Track Listing

1. Speak Low 2. We'll Be Together Again 3. Memories OF You 4. Ill Wind 5. You Don't Know What Love Is 6. I Dream Too Much 7. June In January 8. I'll Take Romance 9. It's So Peaceful In the Country 10. Our Waltz 11. I'm Old Fashioned 12. Goodbye.

Personnel

Mundell Lowe - guitar; Al Klink - bass clarinet (#1), flute (4,9); Phil Bodner - oboe (3, English horn (6,7,12); Trigger Alpert - bass; Ed Shaughnessy - drums. "Our Wlatz" is by unaccompanied guitar.

Album information

Title: Guitar Moods | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Riverside

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read Jammin' With KC
Jammin' With KC
Sylwester Ostrowski
Read What Comes Next
What Comes Next
Peter Bernstein
Read A Silent Play in the Shadow of Power
A Silent Play in the Shadow of Power
Bruno Parrinha/Abdul Moimême/Carlos Santos
Read Suite!
Suite!
Roberto Magris

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.