All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

438

Regina Carter: Reverse Thread

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count
What does the award-winning, classically trained, jazz violinist Regina Carter do, after playing Niccolo Paganini's famous Guarneri "Cannon" violin in Paganini: After a Dream (Verve Music Group, 2003), or reinterpreting songs from the 1920s-1940s in I'll Be Seeing You ( Verve Music Group, 2006)? She directs her interests and passion towards African folk music in Reverse Thread, a significant work in her already diverse discography.

A 2006 MacArthur Fellow, Carter took full advantage of the very generous funding to exhaustively research rich traditional music, that encompasses the reach of the African Diaspora. "Hiwumbe Awumba" is based on field recordings from Ugandan Jews, while "Un Aguinaldo Pa Regina" blends African music with harmonies originating in India and Puerto Rico, fresh interpretations of music from Mali or Madagascar, and the timeless sounds of ancestral instruments.

From the hinterlands in Africa, Europe, and the Americas, this is modern folk music that is global, traditional, and full of soul. It's a communion of sounds, articulated by Carter's resonating violin, along with a fine ensemble of noted jazz artists and brilliant additions including the old-world timbre of accordionists Will Holshouser and Gary Versace, and Kora (21-string West African harp) master, Yacouba Sissoko.

What might sound like a jig, a polka, or Cajun rug cutting music, might actually come from an African folktale through the infectious rhythm of "Kanou." The soothing hypnotism of "N'Teri" is uplifting, as the melody is layered by contrasting instrument textures. The variety is abundant. Whereas "the elongated melody of "Kothbiro" moves gently, "Full Time" is Afro-pop dance music, with Carter bowing effervescently, propelled by Mamadou Ba's funky bass and Alvester Garnett's (Carter's husband) tight drum work. The global demarcation lines are blurred throughout, whether in "Un Aguinaldo Pa Regina" or the festivities in "Zerapiki," originally an accordion-based song brought from Madagascar.

A sense of spirituality is also present. The stirring rendition of the church hymn "Juru Nani / God Be With You" contains multiple styles and boundaries, exchanging ideas from Africa to America, while the haunting accordion/violin harmonies in "Mwana Talitambula" are based on a field recording of a woman singing in eastern Uganda.

There's a trove of jewels waiting to be mined in Reverse Thread. Thankfully, Carter's unquenchable thirst for new music has allowed her to produce this important recording.

Track Listing: Hiwumbe Awumba; Full Time; N'Teri; Artistiya; Un Aguinaldo Pa Regina; Kothbiro (Intro); Kothbiro; Zerapiki; Day Dreamin on the Niger; Juru Nani / God Be With You; Kanou; Mwana Talitambula.

Personnel: Regina Carter: violin; Yacouba Sissoko: Kora (2, 3, 6, 7, 11); Adam Rogers: guitar (1, 5, 8); Will Holshouser: accordion (1, 7, 8, 10-12); Gary Versace: accordion; (2-5, 9); Chris Lightcap: bass;(1, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10-12); Mamadou Ba: bass (2, 3, 9); Alvester Garnett: drums, percussion; Joe Ferla: hand claps (8).

Title: Reverse Thread | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: E1 Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Profiles
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Southern Confort

Southern Confort

Sony Masterworks
2014

buy
Southern Comfort

Southern Comfort

Sony Masterworks
2014

buy
Reverse Thread

Reverse Thread

E1 Records
2010

buy
I'll Be Seeing You: A Sentimental Journey

I'll Be Seeing You: A...

Verve Music Group
2006

buy
Paganini:  After a Dream

Paganini: After a...

Verve Music Group
2003

buy

Related Articles

Read Smart Grid CD/LP/Track Review
Smart Grid
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 16, 2018
Read Monochrome CD/LP/Track Review
Monochrome
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: July 16, 2018
Read Attitude Manouche CD/LP/Track Review
Attitude Manouche
by Chris Mosey
Published: July 16, 2018
Read Geometry of Caves CD/LP/Track Review
Geometry of Caves
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 16, 2018
Read This World of Dew CD/LP/Track Review
This World of Dew
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: July 16, 2018
Read Gegenschein CD/LP/Track Review
Gegenschein
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 15, 2018
Read "New Devices" CD/LP/Track Review New Devices
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 14, 2018
Read "Secret Passages" CD/LP/Track Review Secret Passages
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: December 11, 2017
Read "Moving Day" CD/LP/Track Review Moving Day
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 27, 2018
Read "Tall Tales And Alibis" CD/LP/Track Review Tall Tales And Alibis
by Doug Collette
Published: March 11, 2018
Read "Wild Is The Wind" CD/LP/Track Review Wild Is The Wind
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 21, 2018
Read "Modern Lore" CD/LP/Track Review Modern Lore
by Gareth Thompson
Published: January 27, 2018