326

John Proulx: Moon and Sand

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
John Proulx: Moon and Sand Los Angeles-native pianist/singer/composer John Proulx possesses the most thrillingly androgynous voice since Chet Baker whispered "My Funny Valentine. The comparison cannot stop there. Both Baker and Proulx nominally hail from the Midwest (Baker from Oklahoma, Proulx from Michigan). Both men sing with a vibrato-less high tenor; and both men gravitated to the same corner of the American musical canon.

But there is where the similarities end. To dispense with the necessary Chet Baker comparisons from the get go, John Proulx is light years ahead of Baker as an expressive singer, and his classically trained pianism permits him to be a superior musician and composer.

Proulx's debut recording, Moon and Sand, is part of MaxJazz's vocal piano series, whose previous releases have included Dena DeRose's A Walk in the Park (2005) and Patti Wicks' Love Locked Out (2003). Veteran bassist Chuck Berghofer and drummer Joe LaBarbera join Proulx for this recital.

What's most striking up front is the overt expressiveness of Proulx's voice. It is a pretty instrument, in the same way as the late Bobby Short's and Jimmy Scott's voices. It is a purely distilled spirit able to convey all emotions in the same way that stem cells convey all subsequent cell types, fundamental and basic. This element is best expressed on the disc's slower ballads, such as "Moon and Sand, "Alice in Wonderland, and the Proulx compositions "My Love for You and "Stuck in a Dream with Me (the ostensible redux for Baker's "Deep in a Dream ).

Proulx's pianism is best heard on up-tempo pieces like "I've Never Been In Love Before and "You'd be so Nice To come Home to. His playing shines on these faster pieces, particularly during the bright solo sections. A superb recital by any name.

Track Listing: I've Never Been In Love Before; Moon And Sand; Alice In Wonderland; My Love For You; Do Nothin' Til You Hear From Me; What A Difference A Day Makes; Stuck In A Dream With Me; There Is No Greater Love; I Should Care; So In Love; East Of The Sun; You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To; I Can't Make You Love Me.

Personnel: John Proulx: piano, voice; Chuck Berghofer: bass, Joe LaBarbera: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: MAXJAZZ | Style: Vocal


Shop

More Articles

Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read One Minute Later CD/LP/Track Review One Minute Later
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 28, 2017
Read JK's Kamer +50.92509° +03.84800° CD/LP/Track Review JK's Kamer +50.92509° +03.84800°
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 28, 2017
Read Ephimeral CD/LP/Track Review Ephimeral
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 28, 2017
Read Fly or Die CD/LP/Track Review Fly or Die
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read Speechless CD/LP/Track Review Speechless
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 27, 2017
Read "It's A Man's World" CD/LP/Track Review It's A Man's World
by Geannine Reid
Published: May 12, 2016
Read "Closer To The Sun" CD/LP/Track Review Closer To The Sun
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: January 9, 2017
Read "The Magnificent Thad Jones" CD/LP/Track Review The Magnificent Thad Jones
by Greg Simmons
Published: November 10, 2016
Read "Hank Mobley" CD/LP/Track Review Hank Mobley
by Greg Simmons
Published: December 6, 2016
Read "Escape  from The Unhappy Society" CD/LP/Track Review Escape from The Unhappy Society
by Anthony Shaw
Published: February 1, 2017
Read "Binary" CD/LP/Track Review Binary
by John Sharpe
Published: January 21, 2017

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM RECORDS | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!