This CD is a tribute to the art and the Beat Generation. Compositions by Frank Carlberg and texts written by Jack Kerouac, Anselm Hollo, Robert Creeley, Joel Oppenheimer, Gertrude Stein, Kenneth Rexroth, Sebastien Chamfort.Tracklisting:
"A native of Helsinki, Finland, Frank Carlberg continues to establish himself as pianist and composer in the world of contemporary jazz. His new release furthers his great talents to an international jazz audience.
Christine Correa is the voice to the poetry by Robert Creeley, Anselm Hollo, and others. The musicians are first rate and display much creativity in these unusual performances.
There are eleven compositions, each by Frank Carlberg. Among the titles are "Hills," "The Act," "Better on Your Arse," "Asparagus," and "Pull My Daisy." The audience will find each song original!
This is a fine showcase CD for the compositions and piano stylings of Frank Carlberg. The musicians are superb. Excellent production values."
- L. Prosser, Jazz Review (dot Com)
Face Magazine - "Jazz Lives: Best CDs of the Year"
"The days of 2003 are dwindling down. It must be top-ten time! I've been thinking that this year was one where I heard more quality work in the area of 'traditional' approaches. There were some innovative efforts made but most only partially succeeded, to my ears. Of course, I must point out that I didn¹t hear everything that came out. That would be very difficult and expensive to do. So, I'm sure I've missed some really good albums. Anyway, here goes (in no particular order):
7) In the Land of Art, Frank Carlberg (Fresh Sound) - Pianist/composer Carlberg has always played well and has often set poetry to music in collaboration with singer/wife Christine Correa. But this set, to my ears, is a quantum leap forward. The group is in extra-fine form, with saxophonists Chris Cheek and Andrew Rathbun ideally suited to the hard-edged probing and sparring that the leader¹s work requires. And Correa has never sounded better, spicing her recitative style with bouts of eerie chant and pure jazz wailing."
- S. D. Feeney
"The beat poets and writers of the '50s idolized the bop players of their day. Jazz served as a template for their compositional methods and performing styles, and as a soundtrack to their writings. This adulation may not have gone both ways, though, as a quote attributed to Miles Davis indicates: "The Beat Generation ain't nothin' but just more synthetic white shit!" It's been a half century since beat and bop were the hip countercultures, and pianist Frank Carlberg has used that to his advantage to freshly interpret them on In the Land of Art.
In a clever turnabout, Carlberg has chosen to base several of his musical compositions on literary pieces by beat stalwarts Jack Kerouac, Robert Creeley, and Kenneth Rexroth. In addition, poet Gertrude Stein, 18th century epigramist Sebastien Chamfort and latter day beat-influenced writers Joel Oppenheimer and Anselm Hollo also contribute. What makes this work so well is that Carlberg and his bandmates have a keen sense for that which Allan Ginsberg termed "spontaneous bop prosody" the variations in pitch and rhythm that served as the basis for the beat's art. Christine Correa's exquisitely expressive voice alternates between poet and instrument on these cuts, while saxmen Chris Cheek and Andrew Rathbun showcase wide-ranging instrumental and interpretive abilities. In addition, bassist John Hebert and drummer Michael Sarin are able to set their own paces while keeping up with Carlberg's changing ones. From the opening bop stream of consciousness presentation of Kerouac's classic angry lament "Misery Poesy", to the group recitation of his "Pull My Daisy (Fie My Fum)", the players explore a smorgasbord of moods and styles. Hollo's "Hills" receives a Kurt Weill treatment and the wittiness of his "Land of Art" is not lost, as Correa clearly enunciates each verse to a marching boppish beat. On other tunes, Correa is capable of contorting and slurring individual syllables into new shapes. This can result in scat, as on Oppenheimer's "The Act", or in the exotic chanting performances of Creeley's "Nowhere One Goes" and Stein's "Asparagus". With its on-the-mark musical, vocal and piano interpretations, adventurous rhythm section explorations and expressive dual sax playing, Carlberg has shown that sh*t can flow uphill In the Land of Art."
- E. Simon, All About Jazz-New York
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