Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Dexter Payne Quintet - Jazz For All (Jazz Forró)

Dexter Payne (YouTube still)
Some time ago I wrote a small review of clarinettist Dexter Payne's  first CD release by his quintet entitled Pra Vocé (Dexofon Records, 2014) devoted to Brazilian music rooted in choro and samba here updated in the quintet's magnificent interpretations of classics from the gafieira (ballroom) tradition a.o. (- the review is still accessible, here).  Now a new CD by Dexter Payne Quintet has been released earlier this year entitled Jazz For All (Dexofon, 2018)
Dexter Payne Quintet- Jazz For All (Jazz Forró) (Dexofon, 2018)
Dexter Payne's Quintet include Dave Willey (accordion), Bill Kopper (6 and 7 string guitar), Victor Mestas Perez (piano, Rhodes), Raoul Rossiter (drums, percussion) besides Dexter Payne (clarinet), and the new CD has guest performance by vocalist Elena Camerin Young in a single track. The title of the CD contains a wordplay outlined in the sub-title Jazz Forró which points to the influence of both American jazz and Brazilian forró in the featured music at the disc.
A traditional forró trio feat. accordion, triangel and zabumba (drum)
Forró is a traditional music genre originated in Northeastern Brazil that encompasses various dance styles as well as a number of different musical beats. This music genre has gained widespread popularity in all regions of Brazil thanks to musicians like accordionist Luiz Gonzaga and percussionist Jackson do Pandeiro, who are considered pioneers, and modern followers like accordionists Dominguinhos and Sivuca and i.e. multi instrumentalist Hermeto Pascoal  a.o.  - The word 'forró' is probably a derivative of forrobodó, meaning "great party" or "commotion", another explanation often heard is that the word forró is a derivative of the English expression "for all" and that it originated in the early 1900s. English engineers on the Great Western Railway of Brazil near Recife would throw balls on weekends and classify them as either only for railroad personnel or for the general populace ("for all"). (info excerpted from Wikipedia)
(l-r): Dave Willey (acc), Elena Camerin Young (voc), Roul Rossiter (dm, perc.), Dexter Payne (cl), Bill Kopper (g), Victor Mestas Perez (piano, keys)
The CD has 10 tracks, nine of them are compositions by Brazilians and one by the quintet's guitarist Bill Kopper, who penned Forrozinho - a great and humorous contribution with hints to traditional Forró including an intro of triangel and accordion searching for the right key and groove before the clarinet and ensemble continue in a danceable theme and several repeated turn-around end tags. The Brazilian repertoire includes various styles, even an updated version of (part of) Villa Lobos' Bachianas Brasileiras no. 2 with lyrics by the poet Ferreira Gullar entitled Trenzinho do Caipira sung by Elena Camerin Young. This was performed live by the quintet and vocalist in a concert earlier this year, inserted here to give you an impression of this modern interpretation of Villa Lobos' music

Two tracks have compositions by Brazilian multi instrumentalist Arismar do Espirito Santo, Vestido Longo and Dia Santo - the first mentioned was performed by Dexter Payne Quintet in a live concert June 2017, inserted below

Two tracks have modern choro compositions by Brazilian guiar virtuoso Alessandro Penezzi, Ao Mestre and Sempre Que Posso - the first mentioned was performed live by Dexter Payne Quintet in the same concert that featured vocalist Elena Camerin Young

The remaining four tracks have compositions by Moacir Santos, Coisa No. 10, Coração Latino by Antonio Mello, Dominguinhos' De Leve and Xote de Saudade by Dom Salvador - together with the above mentioned this repertoire draws a multicolored picture of the featured music at the Jazz For All CD. The mixture of various Brazilian sources mainly rooted in different Northeastern styles with the collective term Forró and modern American jazz improvisation creates a synergy effect, where the whole constitutes more than the parts that are included. The performance of the tunes is flawless and excellent throughout, the musicians know each other in and out from years of coorperation, all involved contribute to a successfull album of great music, highly recommended. The CD is available for purchase at Bandcamp, here or here