Dave Burrell

La Vie de Boheme

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Joining Burrell on this adaptation of Pucinni's La Vie de Boheme are a number of fine players who should prove familiar to those already acquainted with the BYG Actuel series. This cast would include trombonist Grachan Moncur III, drummer Claude Delcloo, reedman Kenneth Terroade, bassist Beb Guerin, and Ric Colbeck on both trumpet and piano harp. Eleanor Burrell is on hand as well and provides periodic vocal accompaniment. This session should serve as a fine example of the similarities between the free jazz and classical worlds. While it would be difficult to argue that Pucinni's original opera had anything to do with avant-garde jazz, the performances found here clearly display a reverence for the aesthetic of the original. There is a great deal of improvisation on this record, to be sure, but the major themes from each act -- when referenced -- are performed in a way that is neither ironic nor overly strict. In this sense, one could consider this an extended improvisation influenced by La Boheme rather than a straight performance. Otherwise, listeners unfamiliar with the original opera should find this to be an enjoyable listen as well. Like most sessions featuring Grachan Moncur III, this set is highly recommended for those who like the quieter, reflective side of free jazz.

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