Windmills of Your Mind

Windmills of Your Mind

by Paul Motian
     
 

Recorded by this quartet to celebrate drummer Paul Motian's 80th birthday, The Windmills of Your Mind is a collection of jazz and pop standards played by a stellar quartet that includes guitarist Bill Frisell, vocalist Petra Haden, and bassist Thomas Morgan. It mirrors, in an indirect manner, some of Motian's OnSee more details below

Overview

Recorded by this quartet to celebrate drummer Paul Motian's 80th birthday, The Windmills of Your Mind is a collection of jazz and pop standards played by a stellar quartet that includes guitarist Bill Frisell, vocalist Petra Haden, and bassist Thomas Morgan. It mirrors, in an indirect manner, some of Motian's On Broadway releases (Morgan appeared on the fifth volume and Frisell on the first three), as well as the all-but-ignored duet album Petra Haden & Bill Frisell, from 2003. While this is Motian's date, it is Frisell who keeps these skeletal arrangements together. One gravitates naturally to his instrument's lyricism as it introduces each tune as if it were a human voice. When Haden enters, it's almost as if she duets with Frisell. This doesn't take anything away from Motian or Morgan. Even at his advanced age, the drummer is a consummate dancer, his touch erudite and certain, yet so artful and airy it sets these rather straight re-readings just "off" enough to open them up musically. Take the mysterious intro to the title track, introduced by his brushed snare and hi-hat. Frisell hints at the melody, posing it as a question to Haden, who states the lyric sweetly and plaintively, yet Motian's movement unlatches the door at the ends of each of her lines. Haden introduces "I Loves You Porgy," as a nearly pastoral love song. Frisell follows suit, highlighting her vocal with shimmering chord voicings and just enough reverb to create space. While Morgan's bassline stays close to the changes, it's Motian's accents, feints, and stutter-stops that hint there is a darker drama afoot. Only Frisell's guitar keeps the tune from moving somewhere else. Johnny Mercer's "I Remember You" begins almost haltingly with the trio finding a common space to insinuate rather than state the melody. When Haden begins singing, Morgan finds it first, while Motian skates around it deftly, creating movement inside Frisell's restraint. The singer is allowed to imbue the lyric with shades of meaning that not only evoke memory, but also a present-tense, nearly wistful longing. There are some lovely instrumental interludes inside its nearly six-minute length, that evidence the close listening of all participants at work on this lovely recording.

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Product Details

Release Date:
08/09/2011
Label:
Winter & Winter
UPC:
0025091018222
catalogNumber:
182
Rank:
146534

Related Subjects

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Paul Motian   Primary Artist,Drums
Bill Frisell   Electric Guitar
Petra Haden   Vocals

Technical Credits

George Gershwin   Composer
Irving Berlin   Composer
Michel Legrand   Composer
Pee Wee King   Composer
Redd Stewart   Composer
Alan Bergman   Composer
Marilyn Bergman   Composer
Sammy Cahn   Composer
Henry Creamer   Composer
Ron Saint Germain   Engineer
Ira Gershwin   Composer
Johnny Mercer   Composer
Paul Motian   Composer
Ralph Rainger   Composer
Leo Robin   Composer
Jule Styne   Composer
James Johnson   Composer
Victor Schertzinger   Composer
Mariko Takahashi   Executive Producer
James Sherman   Composer
Roger Ramirez   Composer
Stefan Winter   Producer,Executive Producer
Adrian von Ripka   Mastering

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