C M - Lucidity
not easy to
find your favorite artist at mp3.com. But those who have time
and passion, will discover music, which is worth to be showcased. One
of these artists is C M. Don't ask me who C M is. It's the personal
decision of every artist to publish his name or not.
"With roots as a classically
trained trumpet and French horn player, C Mís musical vocabulary has
evolved over the last 25 years to encompass many different genres, all
contributing to his unique jazz style. After playing with Willie Ruff
and the Yale Jazz Ensemble, as well as the Yale Symphonic Band, C M
was an active musician in NYC during the 80's, playing trumpet in a
Brooklyn calypso band, writing and recording many songs, and leading
his own band. After a hiatus from music, he resumed composing and
recording again in mid-2000." So far the short bio, which is
published at http://www.javamusic.com/cm.
The big advantage of mp3.com
artists is the possibility of internet based
collaboration. I already reported about this appearance in my review
about Morris Code's album "Code
A La Mode". Comprehensible is C M's comment:
"One of my main objectives
musically in 2002 was to collaborate with many different musicians
through the internet. Many of the recordings on "Lucidity"
have been improved by the involvement of some very talented musicians
from Italy, England, Canada and various parts of the US. Several of
these artists are fellow members of the Free Audio Player collective (www.freeaudioplayer.com)."
C M's idea behind his new album is
fascinating: "As a student in college, I spent time
studying the stream of consciousness and its relationship to musical
creativity. So I find fascinating the concept of "lucid
dreaming", the state of dreaming while knowing that you are
dreaming. I can think of no better metaphor for my experience of
musical improvisation than this. As the music flows by, I can become
lost in the dream-like state of wonder and uncertainty, never quite
sure where the music is taking me. Yet, in the midst of this dream,
through my horn I find a sense of clarity and direction. On another
level, I experience a temporary sense of lucidity through the clarity
and meaning of a piece of music, in the midst of the chaos and
unpredictability of daily life."
Savvy, the first track, is the best of
this album. Very dynamic and groovy, it sounds like one of Rick
Braun's or Herb Alpert pieces. The similiarity of style isn't
accidental, both artists are obviously C M's models, although he
counts Miles, Freddie Hubbard or Herbie Hancock to his influences.
Savvy was written and produced by Bob Gaynor, who is also an acclaimed
artist of the mp3.com-scene.This was the first time Bob has done an
Keisha's Lament is a composition C M
originally wrote in 1989. As he was recording a new version, he wanted
to add a sax part, and was referred by
several people to Bob Johnson,
who lives in Canada and has lots of internet collaboration experience
through his membership in the virtual band "The FunkDawgs".
Bob was eager to add a part to the song, and C M looks forward to doing more projects with
Bob in the future. Beside trumpet and flugelhorn C M is also a
perfect player of keyboards, percussion and drum programming.
is C M' version of a wonderful song written by Italy's Lord
Bygon, which he has performed many times and has recorded several
different versions. C M plays a warm and clear flugelhorn in an
atmospheric mood. C M comments: "This was my first experience
recording a "cover" version of a song written by a fellow
independent artist. I think Lord Bygon is an excellent songwriter, and
I plan on recording more of his compositions in the future. Although
my version of "Thirst" is instrumental, the lyrics are quite
Chasing After Wind is different to the
previous pieces in style, arrangement and interpretation. A song,
written and performed by Jeza,
an U.K. artist. C M contributed flugelhorn, percussion and keyboard
parts to his version of the song. He agreed to allow C M to produce
his own mix of the song, for which he recorded new horn and percussion
parts. The lyrics of this song are by King Solomon from The Book of
The title track Lucidity is a quiet,
introspective solo piece, on which C M plays muted trumpet and
keyboards. A piece for contemplation and reminescences.
Close To My
Soul features an acoustic guitar solo by NY jazz artist Bill
Farrish. This slow piece prolongues the mood of a silent hour.
Intercoastal is one of several
collaborations C M did this year with Steve
Arms , who lives in Florida. Steve's a fantastic guitarist and
composer, and his work has generally been in the rock and New Age
areas. He agreed to try some smooth jazz, and C M consider shis
playing on this song to be
one of the real highlights of the entire album. I can agree without
reservation. Steve also produced and mixed this song, and he also
mixed "Keisha's Lament".
Yellow Jacket Swim is a departure from C
M's normal musical territory, this composition was an attempt to
produce some "acid jazz", and he collaborated on it with the
young local electronic musician/engineer Q
a e, who did some interesting remixing with the individual musical
phrases C M provided him. This experimental tune reveals that mp3.com
artists have still the freedom to choose what they want to play.
Sweet Chariot is a collaboration with singer Kim
Novak, who lives in Texas, grew out of an upcoming album project
for Minneapolis Coalition Records (MCR), involving modern versions of
older public domain songs. They worked on giving this old and
often-recorded spiritual a fresh, world sound, with many little
interlocking musical parts. It's sounds like a Carribean gospel
a reminiscence to C M's previous activity in a calypso band.
After Wind (Reprise) is an instrumental
version of the above song #4. C M comments: "I enjoyed this
composition and rhythm track so much, I wanted to stretch out and
enjoy playing with it some more!" The CD-booklet doesn't mention
Grey Skies is an instrumental composition
written by Steve Arms, this was the first recording Steve and C M
worked on together. C M reflects: "I felt the gentle, peaceful
atmosphere of the recording was the perfect way to
bring my album to a close."
M 's album Lucidity isn't a dancefloor album for headboppers, I selected it
for a review, because it has some qualities I miss on many albums
today. C M's songs have a soul.