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Jazz Takes On Joni Mitchell

David Lahm Audio CD
1.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 6.55
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Product Details


1. Solid Love
2. Song for Sharon
3. Edith & The Kingpin
4. Coyote
5. Blue Motel Room
6. Blonde in the Bleachers/The Vamp from Hell -
7. Fiddle and the Drum
8. Solid Love [Alternate Version]
9. Shadows and Light

Product Description

Product Description

Amazon.ca

Composer-pianist David Lahm's admiration for Joni Mitchell is unequivocal: he calls her "the most original post-Tin Pan Alley songwriter we've ever heard" and his "takes" on her songs attempt to match her originality with his own fanciful, jazzy arrangements. He writes in the liner notes, "I have been able to do what no one else has." Lahm uses instrumental interpretations by musicians largely unfamiliar with Mitchell's songs, and his success will undoubtedly depend on each listener's feelings toward the original material. In particular, one must determine if the absence of Mitchell's utterly unique voice and lyrics is adequately replaced by the individual soloists, and, given the wide stylistic range of Lahm's music, it is difficult to reach any definitive conclusions. However, regardless of one's attachment to the Mitchell originals or one's assessment of Lahm's self-congratulatory interpretations, one thing is perfectly clear: the late Thomas Chapin's extended alto sax solo on "Shadows and Lights" will take your breath away. --Wally Shoup

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars BORING Nov. 21 2002
Format:Audio CD
I purchased this CD as a present for my wife, who is a major Joni
lover. I saw her for the first time at Bethel,NY (Day in the Garden), and it sent chills down my spine. Unfortunately, this recording was extremely boring, both from a jazz perspective ( I'm a jazz drummer), and from a Joni perspective. I found that Joni herself is more "jazzier" than "Jazz Takes" will ever be. I've heard jazz interpretations of so-called popular music that were much better than this i.e. Joshua Redman- Timeless Tales (which incidentally covers Joni's "I Had a King" from her really early recordings. Stick to the real article here! Incidentally, both my wife and I agreed that this recording wasn't good enough to keep, and sold it to a local used CD store.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 2.5 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joni Mitchell as Jazz June 3 2000
By Shirley Horrocks - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I was very surprised and pleased with this CD - one of the most interesting purchases I have made from Amazon in recent years. Jazz versions of today's popular music are often unsuccessful because the two worlds don't quite fit together, but this album has made me understand that there is a jazz dimension in Joni Mitchell songs (like, seriously so). It helped me to listen to the originals with new ears. Besides being a fascinating "reading" of Mitchell, this is also a very good jazz CD in its own right. Thoughtful, thoroughly professional musicians who seem to be really enjoying themselves. David Lahm's arrangements are varied and inventive, but at the same time manage somehow to keep the spirit of the originals. It's obvious from every aspect of this album - including the interesting album notes - that this was not just "another CD" but a labour of love. I think both Mitchell fans and jazz fans will be surprised and pleased with this CD (even those suspicious of the other genre). For me the CD came as a surprise discovery and I write this review as a way to pass on the discovery to others. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars BORING Nov. 21 2002
By David Weitz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I purchased this CD as a present for my wife, who is a major Joni
lover. I saw her for the first time at Bethel,NY (Day in the Garden), and it sent chills down my spine. Unfortunately, this recording was extremely boring, both from a jazz perspective ( I'm a jazz drummer), and from a Joni perspective. I found that Joni herself is more "jazzier" than "Jazz Takes" will ever be. I've heard jazz interpretations of so-called popular music that were much better than this i.e. Joshua Redman- Timeless Tales (which incidentally covers Joni's "I Had a King" from her really early recordings. Stick to the real article here! Incidentally, both my wife and I agreed that this recording wasn't good enough to keep, and sold it to a local used CD store.
2 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Maybe for jazz fans, but not so much for Joni fans. Aug. 29 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
As a big fan of Joni Mitchell, I had high hopes for this CD -- maybe _too_ high. It's much more "jazz" than it is "Joni."
When I thought of jazz and Joni combined, I imagined something like _Hejira_ or _Miles of Aisles_: Joni's songs with jazz inflections added. Somehow, extended vibraphone solos and such don't say "Joni Mitchell" to me. She is all about style _and_ substance; these renditions change the style and lose the substance.
Good advice for anyone considering buying music online from a site such as Amazon: listen to some of the samples they provide from each album! Had I listened to samples of this album, I probably wouldn't have spent the money.
(Sorry to sound so negative from my purely Joni-based perspective. The performances on this album sound quite competent, and if you're a jazz fan, you'll probably enjoy it!)
1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Bad, Bad, Interpretation April 19 2002
By Michael Klein - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is an extremely lathargic and unspired CD. Joni Mitchell music is taken here VERY literally, which doesn't fare well, even in this particular jazz setting. The arrangements are extremely simplistic (except "Edith and the Kingpin" but the meter here is way too slow to the point of non-recognition of the material on which it is based), and the playing is strangely pedestrian and uninspired. And sparse -- like there were only two or three instruments in the room. And Thomas Chapin's flute solo on "Coyote" has a lot of "wrong" notes in it. The whole effort is kinda Joni Paint by Number music. A must, I'm afraid, to avoid.
However, all is not lost in this peculiar sub-genre. For a truly inspired jazz interpretation of a great composer, check out "Color and Light: Jazz Sketches of Sondheim". It's just terrific.
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