Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Time Remembered: John Mclaughlin Plays Bill Evans
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Listen to Samples
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Anybody here ever heard Joe Pass play Song for Helen?
axedog | White Bear Lake Minnesota USA | 03/07/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"No disrespect intended to Maestro McLaughlin or the reviewers comments...but perhaps a slightly differing opinion. Mclaughlin is truly unique, an amazing talent, innovator, breakthrough artist. Perhaps most demonically virtuosic on the polar opposites of the guitar spectrum: at one end the searing electric overdriven mahavishu madness - the other the heavenly acoustic Shakti flights of blinding brilliance. It's just the middle part of his repetoire here...here where John attempts to cover classic old straight-ahead Jazz standards. Hmmm. It's perfectly OK music, and yes, surely it's "his own take" on it, but it's somehow lacking...every track is overdubbed and otherwise processed...there are no purely solo jazz guitar chord-melody takes on any of these standard covers. That certain "swing" that jazz standards breathe is missing. I was hoping to finally hear John play some solo flowing intricate legato chord melody lines reminiscient of Evan's pianistic compositions, not one recorded track of guitar playing the chords and the second or third overdubbed track noodling on top. It almost seems a little like "cheating." Alas, in this classic genre, John must take back seat to jazz guitar solo chord melody masters such as of Joe Pass, Johnny Smith, George Van Epps, Martin Taylor. (I would love to hear Martin Taylor cover these same Bill Evans songs ala his mindbogglingly brilliant chord melody playing - and then play the cuts side by side...Mclaughlin's shortcomings as a solo straight-ahead jazz chordal soloist would become obvious.) Mclaughlin is great, yet slightly out of his element here, even as he offers a sincere tribute to Bill Evans."
This Is SO Extraordinary!
D. J. Zabriskie | Park Ridge, NJ USA | 05/17/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Back in 1970, when the guys I used to play rock and roll with were relaxing by smoking weed and listening to "Bitches Brew" by Miles Davis, we were all absolutely floored by guitarist John McLauglin.
His staggering chops, his voluminous harmonic sense and his ability to vary his attack to create a variety of moods just made us all despair of how far we had to go with this thing called "music."
How extraordinary then, that McLauglin got the same feelings while listening to Bill Evans play piano.
This is one of the very best "tribute" albums ever. It is something McLauglin could not have done as a younger man, since he had to travel many roads and explore many styles to discover the kind of introspection with a touch of melancholy that was Evans' signature as a performer. But he certainly gets it right here. Only "Homage" is an original tune; all other are Evans compositions, and the way McLauglin gets to the emotional core of each and every one of them sends shivers up your spine. The arrangements, for a quintet of acoustic guitars led by McLaughlin are all perfect, avoiding the clutter that is a risk of using that many of the same instrument. Meanwhile, the ensemble sets just the right mood for each of these numbers. Even when McLaughlin unleashes his quicksilver runs, it is only what is required by the music... a reminder that Bill Evans too was a virtuoso, however tempered by introspection.
What can I say? This is the perfect springtime album! It is the perfect rainy-day album! It's the perfect album for falling in love by. It's the perfect album for healing a broken heart!
It reminds you that great music is, first and foremost, something MIRACULOUS, something that cannot be put into words, but communicates a wealth of feelings directly.
A Tribute Worthy of a Great Musician
D. J. Zabriskie | 03/02/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"John McLaughlin has done something very rare: he has released a "tribute" CD that honors both his own unique talent and that of Bill Evans. McLaughlin never imitates; he interprets. His interpretations are fresh, but they demonstrate deep respect for the man to whom he pays tribute. McLaughlin is dead-on accurate about one thing: an all-guitar ensemble does flatter Bill Evans's great compositions. The romantic sound of classical guitar perfectly expresses the romanticism of Evans's music. From prologue to epilogue, these arrangements and performances sparkle."