G.F. M'lely


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Hawaii resident G.F. M'lely has been blessed with various artistic talents. In addition to being a pianist and composer, he is an educator, essayist, and author. He also overcame a serious accident which threatened to end his career as a pianist. Thus the title of Re-Entry for his first album, a return to the performing art. Whether he's playing a standard or an original, M'lely's approach has all the flourish and intensity of a classical pianist with the improvisational surprises of jazz. He gets a very different sound from the instrument. Basslines aren't as prominent, as he spends a lot of time at the higher end of the keyboard (or maybe it's the way he has his piano tuned). In addition, he has a unique way of moving back and forth between the stated melody and his own improvisational ideas. Listen to his rendition of "Battle Hymn of the Republic," which has the undulations of a mazurka and, if you listen very closely, a bit of ragtime, as well as other rhythmic commentaries. His compositions are filled with invention and bewitching musical patterns which fit his style well. Abrupt tempo changes pervade "Words We Say," building tension and then allowing its release. "Never Quite Say" has the left hand repeating chords at which the right hand hurls all sorts of swirling, dazzling runs and arpeggios. Very impressive stuff, indeed. The standards also are the recipients of M'lely's nonstop, expressive style, including a captivating "All of You." "It Ain't Necessarily So" is done at a slower, almost dirge-like pace than one usually hears it, again with the right hand bearing the brunt. This album displays a high level of virtuosity and is recommended.

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