"You're technically hip. But what is your story?" This quote from the famous saxophonist and storyteller Lester Young is used in the Danish saxophonist Christian Vuust's introduction to his album Storytelling. The context of the quote is Lester Young teaching a group of young musicians the importance of being able to tell a story with music.
This is a lesson that Vuust learned a long time ago and on this album, he shares some of his favorite musical stories: Danish songs, American standards and the deep longing of a Cuban ballad.
Joining him on this particular release is the empathic pianist Aaron Parks, who was also an important part of Vuust's album Urban Hymn (2014). Here, he once again lends his lyrical touch to an album that glows with soft-spoken intimacy and deep musical understanding. The reading of the lone Cuban ballad, "Eclipse," is the highlight of the set. It is the kind of interpretation where words would only make the song weaker, but the lyric is included in the lavish book that accompanies the album and it tells a story of a love affair gone wrong -so close to being fulfilled and yet so far away.
It is in this emotional space in-between loss and longing where Vuust and Parks play. They play the joy of life and the nostalgia of a life gone by. They play the songs of spring and the laments of winter.
These are all timeless songs. Some of them only known to a Danish audience, but here, they will hopefully find a new audience. All lyrics to the songs are translated into English in the accompanying book, but no translation is needed. The language of the heart is spoken in all countries around the world.
Månestrålen; Sænk kun dit hoved, du blomst; Foolin' Myself; Eclipse; The Man I Love; Man binder os på mund og hånd; En yndig og frydefuld sommertid; Vårvise; Ghost of Yesterday; Sig nærmer tiden, da jeg må væk; Gone with the Wind.
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