Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

236

Sam Sadigursky: The Words Project

Budd Kopman By

Sign in to view read count
Ambition is good. It focuses the mind towards a distant goal, keeping it pointed in the correct direction. When artistic ambition is combined with the talent to fulfill the plan, something special is bound to happen. The Words Project is reedman Sam Sadigursky's leadership debut, and that he chose to mix words and music is ambition of the highest order. That it succeeds so completely is a tribute to the faith Sadigursky had in his vision.

Music is mysterious and abstract and achieves its effects upon us in a still unknown manner. It seems to invade our emotional being directly, almost against our will, after which we think about and conceptualize what just happened. Words are the result of the process of conceptualizing and abstracting reality, ultimately point back to reality it references. Reading or hearing a word is to invoke the concept in our consciousness, after which emotions are felt.

The collision of these diametrically opposite things which work within us in different directions can many times not be pretty. Vocal jazz is to many a lesser art form, bringing the perfect tune and improvisations upon it down into the mud of the concrete.

However, one can look at poetry as an attempt to communicate emotions directly through softening the words' concreteness by raising their rhythms and sounds to the same level as their meaning. Furthermore, a (good) poem's meaning is hidden behind indirection, implication and ellipsis bringing it into the very abstract realm in which music dwells.

The Words Project raises many questions. Why these particular poems? Does listener response to them matter? What if the listener is repelled by a poem's message? What if the listener does not comprehend them at all?

Should the poems be read before listening? Should the liner notes be read while listening? Is it even possible to keep a poem in one's mind when only hearing it, especially when part of one's attention is directed towards the music? Since the music presumably came second, as settings of the words, is its function to help bring forth the poem's meaning? Then again, how can that be when the music draws attention away from the words?

These questions will be answered here only indirectly. Sadigursky's choice of using the uninflected, pure upper range female voice is telling in that such singing brings the voice closer to becoming just another instrument, placing emphasis on how the words sound. Also, pure vocalization occurs many times, further separating the voice from the words.

The music of The Words Project is glorious and easily stands on its own, with many impressive purely instrumental sections. This complex, deeply effecting work is a real paradox in that it is simultaneously a whole, and also two parts that cooperate and compete. Listening without and then with the notes will begin to answer the questions.

Track Listing: After Paradise; Still Life; I'm Glad Your Sickness; Water, Aspirin, You; Love; In The Kitchen; Gardener And Flower Too; You're; Epitaph For A Pair Of Old Shoes; After Love.

Personnel: Monika Heidemann: vocals (3,5,8,9); Heather Masse: vocals (1,4,6); Becca Stevens: vocals (2,5,7), percussion (9); Noam Weinstein: vocals (10); Sam Sadigursky: tenor and soprano saxophone, flute, alto flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, percussion; Pete Rendle: piano, pump organ, accordion; Eivind Opsvik: bass; Tommy Crane: drums, cymbals, percussion, gongs, glockenspiel; Nate Radley: guitar (1,4,6,7); Robert Burkhart: cello (8,9).

Title: The Words Project | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: New Amsterdam Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Album Reviews
Take Five With...
Extended Analysis
Megaphone
Read more articles
Follow The Stick

Follow The Stick

Brooklyn Jazz Underground Records
2016

buy
Follow The Stick

Follow The Stick

Brooklyn Jazz Underground Records
2015

buy
Words Project III Miniatures

Words Project III...

New Amsterdam Records
2010

buy
Words Project II

Words Project II

New Amsterdam Records
2008

buy
The Words Project

The Words Project

New Amsterdam Records
2008

buy
Sam Sadigursky: The Words Project

Sam Sadigursky: The...

New Amsterdam Records
2007

buy

Upcoming Shows

Date Detail Price
May25Sat
The Jamie Baum Septet+
The Cell Theatre
New York, NY
$15

Related Articles

Read Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances Album Reviews
Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances
By Dan McClenaghan
May 21, 2019
Read Crowded Heart Album Reviews
Crowded Heart
By Nicholas F. Mondello
May 21, 2019
Read That's a Computer Album Reviews
That's a Computer
By Jerome Wilson
May 21, 2019
Read All I Do Is Bleed Album Reviews
All I Do Is Bleed
By Paul Naser
May 21, 2019
Read LE10 18-05 Album Reviews
LE10 18-05
By Karl Ackermann
May 20, 2019
Read Remembering Miles Album Reviews
Remembering Miles
By Dan McClenaghan
May 20, 2019
Read Merry Peers Album Reviews
Merry Peers
By Bruce Lindsay
May 20, 2019