215

Kenny Barron: The Traveler

Florence Wetzel By

Sign in to view read count
Kenny Barron: The Traveler The Traveler is a delicious offering of ten beautiful songs by pianist Kenny Barron. Eight of the tunes were composed by Barron, and each one is brimming with his famous lyricism. Most of the songs feature solid underpinning by Kiyoshi Kitagawa (bass) and Francisco Mela (drums), and in addition the CD features a variety of guests who add their own unique voices.

Soprano saxophonist Steve Wilson, a superb player with an intimate, conversational tone, appears on three tunes. He joins the trio for the opening title track, a gentle, emotive song with a touch of melancholy. It's easy to see why Wilson resonates with Barron; both play with effortless ease and utter lack of pretension. On "Speed Trap" the pace is fast, as promised by the title; Barron presses the gas and the band cooks along happily. Wilson also shines on "Illusion," a richly poignant ballad centered upon Wilson's tender, contemplative sax.

Another impressive contributor is guitarist Lionel Loueke, who joins in on three tunes. Loueke pairs with Barron on the appropriately titled "Duet," an engaging song that finds Barron in a playful mood and showcases Loueke's lyrical agility. "Calypso" is a lively song with a delightful bounce and fine lines by Loueke, and the haunting "Phantom" includes Loueke's impressive vocals.

Other treats include "Um Beijo," which features vocals by the eminent Grady Tate, as well as the album closer, a Barron solo on Eubie Blake's "Meaning of You." The latter is pure Barron, his playing resonating elegant warmth that expresses the melody's heart. Altogether The Traveler is a fresh, energetic album that showcases Barron and his formidable talents, but also points the spotlight on his talented collaborators.


Track Listing: The Traveler; Clouds; Speed Trap; Um Beijo; The First Year; Illusion; Duet; Phantoms; Calypso; Memories Of You.

Personnel: Kenny Barron: piano; Kiyoshi Kitagawa: bass; Francisco Mela: drums; Steve Wilson: soprano sax (1, 3, 6); Lionel Louek

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Sunnyside Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by Mark F. Turner
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Before The Silence CD/LP/Track Review Before The Silence
by John Sharpe
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Process And Reality CD/LP/Track Review Process And Reality
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1 CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read "Soundscapes" CD/LP/Track Review Soundscapes
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 4, 2016
Read "Hatch and Host" CD/LP/Track Review Hatch and Host
by Ian Patterson
Published: February 25, 2016
Read "Guitar Fantasies" CD/LP/Track Review Guitar Fantasies
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: November 2, 2016
Read "New Jazz Standards, Volume 2" CD/LP/Track Review New Jazz Standards, Volume 2
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 8, 2017
Read "Angry Waves Vol.1&2" CD/LP/Track Review Angry Waves Vol.1&2
by Nicola Negri
Published: September 30, 2016
Read "Parachute" CD/LP/Track Review Parachute
by Mike Jacobs
Published: September 13, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!