281

Daniel Smith: The Swingin' Bassoon

Jerry D'Souza By

Sign in to view read count
Daniel Smith: The Swingin' Bassoon The bassoon is a difficult instrument to navigate. Yusef Lateef, Ken McIntyre and Frankie Trumbauer are among the few who have played it, although the fit into jazz is often less than tidy. Daniel Smith has sufficient technique to give his instrument of choice an interesting enough voice.

Smith has focus and creativity, which he shows to a large extent on this recording of standards. While he entices when he swings and stokes the flames of a ballad, there are a couple of tunes that eclipse his efforts to fill them with an appealing body or soul.

The good comes first. Smith lays open "I'm Getting Sentimental over You, going into swing mode after stating the head. His tone is deep and rumbling, but he changes the register just enough to lighten the progression. Martin Bejerano (piano) adds a delectably nimble touch. He lights the song, setting in juxtaposition the dark hue of the bassoon with the bright permutation of the piano. There is an added plus in the thick bass notes of John Sullivan.

Smith shines on "Mood Indigo. He plays with becoming ease, slipping into the melody and indulging in its beauty. He chooses to improvise on the melody, and so he is never far from the core. The rhythm section of Sullivan and Ludwig Afonso (drums) is supple, with Afonso adding to the impress with his brushwork. Smith keeps the calypso pulse of "St. Thomas fertile as he sways through the melody. Bejerano takes it out of the center and fills the tune with his marvelous sense of adventure.

Smith's version of "Well You Needn't does not cut the swath. His pace is heavy and bogged down by the bop harmony. In trying to surmount the challenge, he comes up short, as he does on "Scrapple From the Apple.

Despite these drawbacks Smith delivers a tidy enough CD.

Track Listing: I

Personnel: Daniel Smith: bassoon; Martin Bejerano: piano; John Sullivan: bass; Ludwig Afonso: drums.

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Zah Zah | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


comments powered by Disqus

Shop

More Articles

Read The Big Wig CD/LP/Track Review The Big Wig
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Dreamer Is the Dream CD/LP/Track Review The Dreamer Is the Dream
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert CD/LP/Track Review Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Failure of Words CD/LP/Track Review The Failure of Words
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Groove Dreams CD/LP/Track Review Groove Dreams
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Kami Fusen CD/LP/Track Review Kami Fusen
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 23, 2017
Read "Omío" CD/LP/Track Review Omío
by James Nadal
Published: August 31, 2016
Read "Marianne" CD/LP/Track Review Marianne
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 28, 2016
Read "North" CD/LP/Track Review North
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 3, 2016
Read "Life and Other Transient Storms" CD/LP/Track Review Life and Other Transient Storms
by John Sharpe
Published: November 21, 2016
Read "Tribute to Andrezej Przybielski Vol. 1" CD/LP/Track Review Tribute to Andrezej Przybielski Vol. 1
by Karl Ackermann
Published: December 7, 2016
Read "Sunday Bolero" CD/LP/Track Review Sunday Bolero
by James Nadal
Published: June 15, 2016

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!