All About Jazz

Home » News » Recording

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

118

Champian Fulton - The Breeze and I (Gut String)

SOURCE:

Sign in to view read count
As is the current lot of jazz writ large, singers in the idiom rate comparatively low on the public awareness and consumption charts. There are arguable exceptions like Diana Krall and if the definition is particularly inclusive, Norah Jones, but most of the time vocalists are in the same boat as their instrumental brethren. Even that waning bellwether of pop music celebrity, American Idol, gives the deep jazz vocal tradition only passing notice, usually hidden in the colloquial-hinged platitudes of erstwhile arbiter Randy Jackson.

Champain Fulton has a few things going for her that improve the odds. First, she's a competent instrumentalist herself, playing piano in an energetic two-handed touch that harkens back to classic stylists like Hank Jones and Horace Silver and not shy about stepping up for frequent solos. Next, there's her pipes that while not spectacular have an insouciance and verve that exudes easy charm. Ella and Anita are obvious influences and she also names the great King Cole as the patron saint of her piano trio project.

Her taste in sidemen and songbook are also admirable. Bassist Neal Miner, a Smalls regular and leader in his own right who also does duty as co-engineer, lays down a supple walking groove on numbers like a strutting takedown of the Harold Land-scripted “Land's End". Drummer Fukushi Tainaka exercises a similarly elastic approach to time keeping working adroitly on both sticks and brushes. Neither man gets in Fulton's way during her frequent forays up and down the keyboard and measures momentum in an exacting fashion.

Touching again on trio's taste in material, the 13-song set list is weighted towards standards of varying vintages. Fulton refuses to treat any of them as relics or museum pieces. Her brisk exploration of “The Sheik of Araby" is a handy example, no dust-dappled swing heirloom to be found here. Tainaka's locomotive brushes solo alone brings the hoary tune a new millennial finish. Fulton's style of music isn't my usual stomping grounds, but I found much to savor here.

Continue Reading...

This story appears courtesy of Master of a Small House.
Copyright © 2018. All rights reserved.

Visit Website

Tags

CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Speechless

Speechless

Posi-Tone Records
2017

buy
After Dark

After Dark

Gut String Records
2016

buy
The Breeze and I

The Breeze and I

Gut String Records
2010

buy
Sometimes I'm Happy

Sometimes I'm Happy

Venus Records
2009

buy

News

Sponsored announcements from the industry.