Today’s Music: Derek And The Dominoes – Layla (for comparison with the below)
Sometimes I hear a song from a genre I wouldn’t normally listen to, like Aloe Blacc’s single, I Need a Dollar
Sometimes, it’s from a band I like, and it’s exactly what I expect, Like Lynyrd Skynyrd’s album, Edge of Forever
And sometimes, an act I like puts something out that takes my expectations and sends them running for cover.
In a good way.
That was the case with Wynton Marsalis and Eric Clapton’s Play The Blues (Live From Jazz at Lincoln Center).
It’s all here – New Orleans blues, Chicago blues, Delta, some Ragtime, and a few dirges.
Eric Clapton has a growl in his voice on some of the tracks that I haven’t heard before.
Wynton Marsalis defies reality with a plunger at the end of his horn.
But it isn’t just the Wynton & Eric show. There’s plenty of room for some spectacular keys from Chris Stainton and Dan Nimmer. Fantastic rhythm from Ali Jackson on drums, Great upright bass by Carlos Henriquez. Victor Goines (clarinet), Marcus Printup (trumpet) Chris Crenslaw (trombone) round out a phenomenal horn section.
Taj Mahal even shows up at the end with his banjo for a couple of tracks.
From the opening rollicking track, led off by a playful ragtime riff and Eric Clapton shouting about ice cream, the album grabs and doesn’t let go.
Wynton and Eric trade vocals for most of the album, and their two instruments blend and play off each other incredibly well.
To give you an idea, here’s a song most people know, reworked for this show. As a dirge.
If you have any interest in either of these performers, or the blues with aNew Orleans tinge, you can do a lot worse than pick this up.
Two world class performers working with each other to create a level of music I don’t think either of them could have created on their own.
How could I not have expected that?