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La Scena Musicale Online Reviews and News / Critiques et Nouvelles

Visit La Scena Musicale Online Reviews. [Index] Critiques de La Scena Musicale Online

D.D. Jackson Trio in Concert

By Paul Serralheiro December 18, 2002

A musical journey with both familiar and exotic ports of call was captained by D.D. Jackson and mated by bassist Ugonna Okegwo and drummer Dafnis Prieto at the Salle Pierre-Mercure of the Centre Pierre-Peladeau on the evening of December 14.

Performing material from Sigame, Jackson's most recent release, and the forth-coming New-York Suite--which the musicians were scheduled to begin recording the next day at Montreal's Justin Time studios--the trio navigated musical waters that were both comforting and adventurous.

Warm, blues-soaked riffing along with jarring sonic angularity evoked the traditions and iconoclasm of past jazz masters, while the highly chromatic tonal material drew heavily from European Romantic and Post-Romantic art music, with an especially notable Lisztian abandon in Jackson's solos. But rhythm was a source of surprise, highlighted by the contributions of the young Dafnis Prieto, who delivered contemporary urban grooves and beats with aplomb. Tempestuous moments, as in "Invocation" and "Cubano-Funk," alternated with soothing meditative stretches of ballads like "For Desdemona" and "Brooklyn Lullaby," making for a satisfying evening's voyage.

The team-work among the three players was dynamic, although with lots of evident steering by the composer/pianist. There was no doubt, however, that each musician was his own person and had an equal hand in making music out of Jackson's charts.

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