POETIC: MICHAEL KANAN, JOEL PRESS, SEAN SMITH, JOE HUNT
(Smalls, May 13, 2011)

Posted on May 21, 2011 by jazzlives

There are many first-rate jazz players and many inspiring ones — but only a few reach deeply into the poetry at the heart of the music.

Last Friday, May 12, 2011, I saw four of these jazz poets at work at Smalls: Michael Kanan, piano; Joel Press, tenor and soprano sax; Sean Smith, bass; Joe Hunt, drums. Their two sets reached heights that even the best music doesn’t always attain.

I could attempt to describe what I heard in words: Joel’s soulful, conversational approach to melody and his rhythmic energies; Michael’s thoughtful, surprising lines and deep harmonies; Sean’s pulse and empathy; Joe’s array of sweetly musical sounds that embrace the group and push it along. The animation this quartet brought to well-known material. But I’d rather let these shining performances speak for themselves. Pure poetry — deep art that doesn’t call attention to itself but lingers in the mind and the heart. And there’s more to come.

Click here to see and hear the music.

 

 

contact Joel Press at: (617) 527-5227

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