Unpretentious and unassumingThe Sander Baan Quartet's second album, Heartscape, is everything you might expect from a group of well-seasoned musicians with a clear artistic vision. Their music is simple, nonchalant and free from the fetters of the widespread jazz ego.
Featuring both compositions of the bandleader, Dutch saxophonist Sander Baan, and the quartet's bassist, Jonathan Nagel, the album opens with "Emotional Landscapes," promptly laying down the band's signature recipe: a solid groove, a dash of effortlessly uncomplicated harmonies and a pinch of repetitious (yet sincere) melodies. This combination results in a heartfelt and relatable record, that explores the depth of human emotions without excessively intimidating the jazz novice. Throughout the album, the musicians make no secret of their pop culture influences, perhaps most notably so in "Space Invaders"a tune that sounds like it could be the alternate theme song of the original Scooby-Doo seriesand in the pop-flavoured harmonies of "Never Goodbye" and "Unchained." With the dreamily serene "Northern Sun," the band wraps upor rather lays downtheir euphonic heartscape.
All in all, Sander Baan and his quartet have created a highly enjoyable record that neither repels nor obtrudes. Their European release tour will continue in the second half of October.
Track Listing: Emotional landscapes; Space Invaders; I Didn't Expect To Like You; Never
Goodbye; Unchained; Can I Go Home Now?; Casual Superhero; Northern Sun.
I've always loved jazz ...my mother was a classical pianist and my aunt was a blues singer, who was managed by Clarence Williams (Bessie Smith's producer). As a young boy, they introduced me to people like Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughan, and Jimmy Smith
I've always loved jazz ...my mother was a classical pianist and my aunt was a blues singer, who was managed by Clarence Williams (Bessie Smith's producer). As a young boy, they introduced me to people like Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughan, and Jimmy Smith. We hung out at my Aunt Kate's Soul Food restaurant in Harlem after the matinees at the Apollo where I listened to their stories. I knew I wanted to be a jazz musician from then on. My mother wanted me to play piano, but my Aunt bought me a guitar. I've been playing ever since.
At my mother's early prompting, I first sang Blue Velvet at my Catholic elementary school...and all the nuns came running in and asked me to sing again, so I knew I must have sounded pretty good. I've been singing ever since.
I met Tony Bennett in Miami and he inspired me to return to New York. He was a great mentor.
The best show I ever attended is mpossible to say, I've seen so many great shows. From Tony Bennett to Pat Martino, Return to Forever to Weather Report...I've seen some great performances.
My advice to new listeners is don't let jazz intimidate you, the music has something for every listener and it is our American gift to the world.