All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 (or more) and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help

280

Jerry Granelli: Sandhills Reunion

Dan McClenaghan By
Published:
Sign in to view read count
Jerry Granelli: Sandhills Reunion Like rocker Bruce Springsten with his Nebraska or author Annie Proulx with her two volumes of Wyoming stories, Jerry Granelli's Sandhill Reunion —where his band accompanies Rinde Eckert's words—evokes the American experience in the prairie heartland, placing poetic viginettes of small experience under a powerful microscope on a set of of jazz-backed prose poems that explore Billy the Kid, a bygone strip joint, a kiss blown at a wedding from the violinist to a small boy in a "Little White Suit," and roughneck workers constructing a bridge over a "River of Glass," dangling "like a grey spider" on the end of a taunt rope to inspect the rivets and bolts.

The music, composed variously by members of the band, swells with swirling reeds—clarinet, bass clarinet, baritone sax, cello/bass/guitar, and Granelli's drums. It blows moody and cool around Eckert's words like a prairie fog; or chugs into a reedy bump and grind on "Just Angels," a tale that takes us into a bygone "Godforsaken den of inequity."

Sandhill Reunion is unlike anything I've heard, but the mood it draws—going back more than thirty years—is the same as that of Bob Dylan's John Wesley Harding or the Band's The Band : odd, folksy, sometimes surreal tales, very American in nature, told with a simple eloquence entwined with superb yet understated musicianship. An odd, poignant masterpiece.


Track Listing: Like a Ghost in the Grass, Our Particular Tragedy, 20 Questions for an Outlaw, Nolan, River of Glass, Your Voice, Just Angels, Last Light, Little White Suit, Never to See You, Smart Women, Spun Like a Spur

Personnel: Rinde Eckert--voice; Francois Houle--clarinet; Jeff Reilly--bass Clarinet; Dave Mott--baritone saxophone; Christoph Both--cello; Christian Kogel--guitars; J. Anthony Granelli--bass, lap steel guitar; Jerry Granelli--drums, samples

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Songlines Recordings | Style: Fringes of Jazz


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Interviews
Read more articles
What I Hear Now
What I Hear Now
Addo Records
2015
buy
[no cover]
Nowness
Lola Records
2013
buy
[no cover]
1313
Lola Records
2010
buy
Vancouver '08
Vancouver '08
Songlines Recordings
2009
buy
The Sonic Temple
The Sonic Temple
Songlines Recordings
2007
buy
Sandhills Reunion
Sandhills Reunion
Songlines Recordings
2005
buy

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.