Sandro Roy feat. Biréli Lagrène, You Are the Sunshine of my Life, Skip ****

Swing violin and guitar in a positive vein here on the Stevie Wonder classic 'You Are the Sunshine of My Life' a number 1 hit single for Tamla in 1973 - zone in within the Stevie sound on the congas of Richie Havens player Daniel Ben Zebulon who …

Published: 31 Aug 2022. Updated: 26 days.

Swing violin and guitar in a positive vein here on the Stevie Wonder classic 'You Are the Sunshine of My Life' a number 1 hit single for Tamla in 1973 - zone in within the Stevie sound on the congas of Richie Havens player Daniel Ben Zebulon who was on Havens' Something Else Again. On this sparkling new instrumental cover violinist Sandro Roy and the swing guitar great Biréli Lagrène whose initial solo is a haven of intricate delicacy and interest distil the spirit of the instantly recognisable melody and find inventive things to do with it. Later in a more extensive even more engrossing solo he seems around the three minute mark to quote a little of 'Pop! Goes the Weasel.'

Using an improvisational style when lots of chord changes do not matter half as much as in bebop nonetheless the spirit of adventure is the same. And there is great looseness found in the flair of the duo. Lagrène shows his modulating chops a great deal during his solo which again is part of the appeal. Roy has a very pristine sound and can shift up the tempo gears effortlessly.

Roy is the son of a family of musicians from Augsburg in Bavaria who has long been influenced by European gypsy swing and American jazz. '…Sunshine…' is from Discovery out on Friday. Discovery also includes versions of 'The Nearness of You' and romantic classic 'Can't Take My Eyes of You' plus five Roy originals and also unveils the violinist's Unity band on a recording for the first time (Boris Netsvetaev on piano, Sven Jungbeck on guitar, and Stefan Berger on double bass). British jazz swing guitar legend Martin Taylor guests on 'True.'

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Wolfert Brederode, Swallow, ECM ****

The best part of the day is the night. When I get home, everything's alright. The lyric above, nothing else, invaded playing 'Swallow' as dusk approaches in terms of some kind of personal listening meaningfulness even when transplanted from a …

Published: 30 Aug 2022. Updated: 27 days.

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The best part of the day is the night. When I get home, everything's alright.

The lyric above, nothing else, invaded playing 'Swallow' as dusk approaches in terms of some kind of personal listening meaningfulness even when transplanted from a completely different and irrelevant idiom.

The stately instrumental cloaked in a very unforced plangent grandeur given its deep concert hall-like seriousness is new in our 1 luv track of the day spot and it is here because of its orchestrated poise and sense of authority. Certainly there is some sublime chamber music resonance that contains a faint jazz inflection from Dutch pianist Wolfert Brederode and drawn from late-September's suite Ruins and Remains. A string quartet and percussion in tow Brederode is with percussionist Joost Lijbaart and the Matangi Quartet. The Manfred Eicher produced recording was made in Bremen last summer.

It's been far too long since we last heard from Brederode and this makes the reacquaintance a rekindling of the pleasure we first knew on singer Susanne Abbuehl's beautiful album The Gift (2013) on which Brederode played a significant role.

Listening it's natural to weave musical images of Brad Mehldau or Michel Reis in the mind's eye. What's here is certainly of their high standard in terms of poise and aestheticism. Lightly couched in a post Bill Evans sense of impressionism this is a track that sees dazzling pianism framed inside a transcendental dream consciousness given birth to by the tragedy of first world war conflict that inspired the overall composition in the first place. Wolfert Brederode, photo: press