Learn How

Help improve All About Jazz

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. For $20, we'll hide those pesky Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

160

Tyrone Brown: Suite For John A. Williams

Nic Jones By

Sign in to view read count
Tyrone Brown: Suite For John A. Williams Though this disc would never win any awards for longevity—it clocks in at under 35 minutes—the fact that the music has such substance more than makes up for it. On the other hand, if there was more of it, the disc could possibly appear on some of those year-end lists.

As a bassist himself, Brown has no little appreciation of the qualities inherent in other instruments in the string family, and his writing for the string quartet heard here, with two violas instead of the usual two violins, has the air of someone who knows also how to provide springboards for improvisation. Bobby Zankel and Adam Williams might well have thought the same, for there's evidence of it in abundance here, and Zankel in particular might well have turned in his best performances on record.

That said, this is a far more integrated date than many similar efforts in the past. Here there is no showcasing of a virtuoso soloist with the strings merely working in accompaniment. Instead the soloists seem to have a knack for not losing sight of the writing over which they're projecting—at the same time as they do a whole lot more than merely embellish the lines of the strings.

Writer John A. Williams, to whom the music is dedicated, makes a spoken word appearance on the sixth movement of the suite, and whilst his recitation of his own work takes the listener in, it does have the effect of distracting attention from the music, and the fact that the opposite is equally true ensures that almost a third of the disc's playing time makes for a frustrating experience.

Indeed frustration is perhaps the word that best sums up the experience of this disc in its entirety, especially in view of the fact that the nature of jazz recording in the early years of the 21st Century might not necessarily bring these musicians together in a studio again. What's here simply oozes class, but the significant qualifications discussed above keep this release from being a minor classic.


Track Listing: 1st Movement: The Man Who Cried I Am; 2nd Movement: This Is My Country Too; 3rd Movement: Captain Blackman; 4th Movement: Clifford's Blues: 5th Movement: Night Song; 6th Movement: Readings From "Safari West."

Personnel: Bobby Zankel: alto saxophone; Melissa Ortega Locati: violin; Beth Dzwil: viola; Nina Cottman: viola; Ron Lipscomb: cello; Adam Williams: guitar; Tyrone Brown: Bass; Craig McIver: drums.

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Dreambox Media | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read #knowingishalfthebattle CD/LP/Track Review #knowingishalfthebattle
by Mark F. Turner
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Live In Brooklyn CD/LP/Track Review Live In Brooklyn
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 23, 2017
Read King Of Xhosa CD/LP/Track Review King Of Xhosa
by James Nadal
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Blooming Tall Phlox CD/LP/Track Review Blooming Tall Phlox
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Hear & Now CD/LP/Track Review Hear & Now
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 22, 2017
Read Known-Unknown CD/LP/Track Review Known-Unknown
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: January 22, 2017
Read "Fellow Creatures" CD/LP/Track Review Fellow Creatures
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 25, 2016
Read "The Big Sound of Lil' Ed & The Blues Imperials" CD/LP/Track Review The Big Sound of Lil' Ed & The Blues Imperials
by Jim Trageser
Published: October 8, 2016
Read "The Real Deal" CD/LP/Track Review The Real Deal
by James Nadal
Published: June 12, 2016
Read "Untitled" CD/LP/Track Review Untitled
by Jack Bowers
Published: October 13, 2016
Read "Radio Days: The Music of Lajos Dudas" CD/LP/Track Review Radio Days: The Music of Lajos Dudas
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 16, 2016
Read "2468 West Grand Boulevard" CD/LP/Track Review 2468 West Grand Boulevard
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: December 27, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Get Jazz Near You via email!

Enjoy the convenience of receiving a comprehensive listing of jazz events in your area every Thursday. It's free!