bobby shew




The Music of Pat Metheny and Lyle Mays

Bob Curnow's L.A. Big Band




Audio Samples:  Always and Forever    Have You Heard?    The First Circle


Pat Metheny and his keyboard collaborator, Lyle Mays, have drawn on diverse sources for their music, combining folk, jazz, country, Latin, and world elements into a tuneful and often electronic mix. Bob Curnow is a veteran of the Stan Kenton Orchestra, and part of his avowed intention here is to set some of the Metheny and Mays compositions within the Kenton style. In keeping with that model, Curnow has assembled a very big band, 20 members strong with five trumpets and five trombones. It's an arresting project, and Curnow has successfully reconceived the Metheny work, substituting layered acoustic winds where electric guitars and keyboards were, enriching the textures and supplying orchestral breadth to what was once more intimate music. Metheny's prettier tunes, such as the ballad "If I Could," take on a Henry Mancini-like luster in this new setting. The sectional play is polished and energetic, and there are plenty of good soloists, including tenor saxophonist Rob Lockart, trombonist Chuck Hughes, and guitarist Paul Viapiano, who frequently provides a sonic bridge between the worlds of Metheny and Curnow. The sound is audiophile quality and the music provides a new look at both Metheny's music and the big-band tradition.


--Stuart Broomer,


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