Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A Toronto-New Orleans link

Toronto-based pianist Jim Clayton considers New Orleans his home away from home. He spends considerable vacation time and got married there. He also decided to make his newest CD in the Crescent City, with four New Orleans-based jazz musicians. Songs My Daughter Knows is on the pianist’s Clay-Tone label.

Clayton developed the project around songs familiar to or inspired by his young daughter, Lenny. It’s an unusual concept, but one that works well. It also underscores the primary ingredients in making jazz: it’s not about the source material so much as the improvisational art practiced by versatile musicians, and their ability to think as one on any given tune. Mixing in a variety of N’awlins rhythms created a bubbling musical gumbo.

Here’s a link to my full review from the January 2014 issue of Offbeat.

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