Home » Jazz Articles » Nicholas Urie: My Garden

140

Album Review

Nicholas Urie: My Garden

By

Sign in to view read count
Nicholas Urie: My Garden
The combination of poetry and music is not new. Spain and Latin America have a great tradition of poetry musicalization. As part of the Nueva Trova style of the 1970s, singers like Silvio Rodriguez, Mercedes Sosa, Atahaulpa Yupanqui and Roy Brown set the poetry of some of Latin America's best writers to music.

Being that jazz is mostly an instrumental form, its fusion with poetry is not that common, which is one of the aspects that makes Nicholas Urie's My Garden so unique. Still in his mid-twenties, Urie is already a recognized composer/conductor, and has led large jazz ensembles as well as symphony orchestras.

After his critically acclaimed debut, Excerpts from an Online Dating Service (Red Piano Records (2009), Urie comes back with the equally creative My Garden, focusing on the poems of Charles Bukowski, born in Germany in 1920 but already living in the United States by1923. This poet/novelist's writing style has been described as minimalist and his poetry as sober, direct, realistic and sometimes crude. So the challenge here was to take that approach and translate it into music.

Urie—conducting a big band of great musicians—rises to the challenge, delivering arrangements with a good balance of simplicity and sophistication that perfectly reflects the mood and meaning of Bukowski's poems. The arrangements vary, from the classical feel of "My Garden" and march-like "For Crying Out Loud," to the swing tempo on "Round and Round," funky groove of "Lioness," and cinematic mood on "Slaughterhouse." With a tone reminiscent of Cassandra Wilson, Christine Correa is ideal for Bukowski' poetry, her empathy translating what Bukowski was feeling when he wrote lines like, "pain is a flower; pain is flowers blooming all the time" adds emotional depth to Urie's music.

Track Listing

Winter: My 44th Year; Round and Round; My Garden; For Crying Out Loud; Lioness; Slaughterhouse; Lean; Finality.

Personnel

Nicholas Urie: conductor; Christine Correa: voice; Frank Carlberg: piano, Rhodes piano; John Hébert: bass; Michael Sarin: drums; Jeremy Udden: soprano saxophone; Douglas Yates: alto saxophone, clarinet; Kenny Pexton: tenor saxopghone; Brian Landrus: bass clarinet; Alan Ferber: trombone; Max Seigel: bass trombone.

Album information

Title: My Garden | Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: Red Piano Records

Post a comment about this album


FOR THE LOVE OF JAZZ
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

WE NEED YOUR HELP
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.

Tags

More

Popular

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and includes upcoming jazz events near you.