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Larry McDonough Group plays Born to be Kind of Blue: the Music of Miles Davis & Chet Baker
Jazz Pianist, Vocalist Composer and Educator
- Monday, May 1, 2017
BOX OFFICE 612-332-5299
About Larry McDonough
Larry McDonough, piano, keyboards, vocals, compositions, and arrangements
Richard Terrill, tenor and soprano saxes, and original poetry
Greg Stinson, acoustic and electric bass
Dean White, drums
Guest: Steve Kenny, flumpet
Review from Andrea Canter, JazzInk
“Fans of Larry McDonough will find no significant disconnect between the two disks that comprise Alice in Stonehenge. Those encountering him for the first time who are generally drawn to acoustic music will likely be surprised by how much they enjoy the melodicism and energy of the Electric disk. And vice-versa: Those generally favoring electronic pop and rock will find themselves drawn to the romantic verve of the acoustic set. It’s trite to say there’s ‘something for everyone.’ More accurately, everything here is likely to appeal to music lovers of all persuasions, because every track brings a timeless tune delivered by steadfast talents–acoustic or electronic. The 2-volume title is a mash-up of the first tracks from each–Larry’s take on Bill Evans’ ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and his re-arrangement of Spinal Tap’s ‘Stonehenge.’ And on each disk Larry draws upon his recent shows, performed at venues throughout the Twin Cities–tributes to Chet Baker, Miles Davis, and Bill Evans and Tony Bennett, as well to the rock icons of Sting, Clapton, Spinal Tap and more.
Disk One, like live shows, also includes the jazz-themed poetry of saxophonist Richard Terrill. Jazz has long been Larry’s wheelhouse, be it a majestic rearrangement ‘Alice in Wonderland’ that upgrades Alice to royalty or a fresh take on Chet Baker’s ‘The Thrill Is Gone’ where, without imitating Baker’s voice, Larry evokes the pathos of a man who has lost more than the ‘thrill’ of a relationship; Steve Kenny’s trumpet parallel’s the singer’s angst. Jazz treatment of ‘La Marseillaise’? Adding accordion to his arsenal, Larry’s arrangement conveys that sense of swing despite the song’s majestic, patriotic bent. Yet there is still a tinge of sadness, elegy reflecting the world’s reaction to the recent Paris attacks as well as the song’s origin as not only an anthem of national pride but a call to arms and resistance.
Larry takes no fewer liberties on the Electric set, reconfiguring time on all tracks, perhaps most surprisingly on Brubeck’s already fractured ‘Take 5′ (now ‘Take 7′) and including a wide range of influences, from Prince (‘Question of U’) to the melody fragments from individuals with disabilities, originally the Fingersteps and now the SpecAbilities project (‘Funkability’). Unplug or plug in. It’s pure Larry McDonough either way.”