466

Bob Dorough: Small Day Tomorrow

Chris May By

Sign in to view read count
Bob Dorough: Small Day Tomorrow At a party to celebrate his 100th birthday, pianist Eubie Blake, a glass of whiskey in one hand, a cigar in the other, is reported to have observed: "If I knew I was going to live this long, I'd have taken better care of myself." Way to go. (Blake died five days later—but he'd made his point.)

At 82, it sounds like Bob Dorough really has taken care of himself. He's lived in the fast lane since the '50s, but he whoops, hollers, soars and romances through this album like someone half his age, and attacks the piano with the same voracious gusto. It's a remarkable, still out there, high tide performance.

Small Day Tomorrow is lifted further above the ordinary by its material. Subtitled Fran Landesman Revisited, the album features twelve top-drawer, mainly mid- to up-tempo songs, all with lyrics by New York-born cafe, cabaret, counter culture, and demi-monde queen Landesman (now 78 and based in London for many years). Some of the songs are well known, others less so. All are wonderful. Landesman's effortless hipness and expressive genius make her the jazz world's answer to Dorothy Parker, and her lyrics are treasures of elegance and insight. Dorough has collaborated with Landesman since the '50s, and he co-wrote "Small Day Tomorrow" and "Nothing Like You (An Extravagant Love Song)."

Dorough is brilliantly served by a demonic band—Jamie Cullum's backline of Geoff Gascoyne (bass) and Sebastiaan de Krom (drums), unleashed and on the town, plus tenor saxophonist Derek Nash—each of whom plays with electrifying energy and joie de vivre. Nash is massively enjoyable. A chameleon-like musician at home in a variety of styles, he here adopts, with complete conviction, the persona of a bar-walking throwback from the swing/rhythm & blues nexus of the '40s and '50s, fleet-footed, roaring or caressing as required, and totally undemanding of everything but your soul.

Gascoyne's partner, Trudy Kerr, who duets ravishingly with Dorough on the bitter sweet "On Top Of Mount Tipsey," takes solo vocal on "Nothing Like You," which recently gained new currency when it was restored to Miles Davis' Sorcerer, in an inferior version sung too fast and too high by Dorough over an arrangement by Gil Evans.

If this is old age, bring it on (but not yet).


Track Listing: Small Day Tomorrow; Marilyn, Queen Of Lies; Antiquated Love; Harry In The Night; The Winds Of Heaven; Feet, Do Your Stuff; On Top Of Mount Tipsey; New Song; The Ballad Of The Sad Young Men; Nothing Like You (An Extravagant Love Song); Never Had The Blues At All; Evenin' Wearies.

Personnel: Bob Dorough: piano, vocals; Geoff Gascoyne: bass; Sebastiaan De Krom: drums; Derek Nash: tenor saxophone; Trudy Kerr: vocals (7,10).

Title: Small Day Tomorrow | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Candid Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Company I Keep CD/LP/Track Review The Company I Keep
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Ma De Re Sha CD/LP/Track Review Ma De Re Sha
by Geno Thackara
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Ask Seek Knock CD/LP/Track Review Ask Seek Knock
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Air and Light and Time and Space CD/LP/Track Review Air and Light and Time and Space
by John Eyles
Published: June 28, 2017
Read Eleven Cages CD/LP/Track Review Eleven Cages
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 27, 2017
Read Afro-Caribbean Mixtape CD/LP/Track Review Afro-Caribbean Mixtape
by Mark F. Turner
Published: June 27, 2017
Read "A Kenton Celebration" CD/LP/Track Review A Kenton Celebration
by Jack Bowers
Published: October 28, 2016
Read "Miniatures" CD/LP/Track Review Miniatures
by Mark Sullivan
Published: July 20, 2016
Read "IIII+IIII" CD/LP/Track Review IIII+IIII
by James Nadal
Published: April 17, 2017
Read "The Magical Forest" CD/LP/Track Review The Magical Forest
by John Kelman
Published: August 4, 2016
Read "Sketches on the Radio" CD/LP/Track Review Sketches on the Radio
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 14, 2016
Read "Presence" CD/LP/Track Review Presence
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 13, 2017

Smart Advertising!

Musician? Boost your visibility at All About Jazz and drive traffic to your website with our Premium Profile service.