Al Ryan writes…
When pianist/harpsichordist David Gordon isn’t touring with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, he takes his trio of double bassist Jonty Fisher and drummer Paul Cavaciuti on the road. This trio has a unique sound, combining cutting-edge improvisation with humour, lyricism and searingly beautiful melodies.
Al Ryan: David, are you looking forward to playing at Music in the Garden on June 15th?
David Gordon: Very much so. I played there once before and really enjoyed playing under the umbrella in the glorious surroundings of Dame Cleo Laine’s garden.
AR: Your latest project is called ‘The David Gordon Trio Speaks Latin’ which you’re performing at Wavendon – tell me about it and what can we expect?
DG: Expect the unexpected! It certainly took me by surprise rehearsing the project. We’ve tried to take a unique and personal look at music from South America, but avoiding the Latin jazz clichés. We draw on popular music from that continent; songs that capture the revolutionary spirit of the 60s and 70s. We’ve even let Jonty Fisher, our bass player, start to sing on some numbers!
AR: You have both feet firmly in the world of Classical and Jazz. Do you ever have trouble separating both disciplines?
DG: Not at all, in fact I play more 7th and 9th chords on a daily basis in a Baroque context than most people do! Stylistically I enjoy bringing the improvisational side from the 17th and 18th centuries together. Quite often jazz tunes that might be based on baroque motifs pop into my head. I’m also exploring, on an ongoing basis, the role of improvisation within baroque music beyond the realms of basso continuo accompaniment.
AR: Bach or Handel?
DG: If I say Handel my wife will kill me! She’s a viola player and Handel isn’t flavour of the month, so Bach it is. Playing Bach is like nourishment for a musician. If you played enough of his music you’d never have to eat because it’s so nourishing and it has such a wonderful worked through quality.
AR: Ellington or Basie?
DG: Oh that’s a tough one, I love both of them. Ellington, because there was a searching development throughout his career. I always admired the generosity of Duke Ellington, not only with his sidemen, but with other piano players – he was always generous about Oscar Peterson.
AR: Three words that describe The David Gordon Trio?
DG: Witty, romantic/lyrical and groove.
AR: Can you remember that defining moment when you said, “Yes”! this is what I want to be when I grow up” and what was the first jazz album you bought?
Yes, I can and I was staggeringly old too at 18! I think it was hearing the dancing energy of McCoy Tyner live at Ronnie’s that completely blew me away. On record, Herbie Hancock’s album ‘Empyrean Isles’ and particularly ‘One Finger Snap’. I remember the one musician who made me want to give the whole thing up but also gave me the inspiration to form a trio and that was Bill Evans and his 1961 album ‘Explorations’. I just loved tracks like ‘Israel’ and ‘Nardis’. That was first jazz album I bought.
Al Ryan: What’s next?
David Gordon: We launch our new album ‘The David Gordon Trio Speaks Latin’ at Ray’s Jazz Shop in Foyles, 113-119 Charing Cross Road, London on June 12th as part of a six date Jazz Services Tour.
For tour info go HERE
You can catch ‘The David Gordon Trio Speaks Latin’ live on Saturday June 15th as part of Music in the Garden, The Old Rectory Garden, Wavendon, Milton Keynes, MK17 8LU.
For tickets contact Box Office 01908 280800
For more information visit www.stables.org/Whats_on/Music_In_The_Garden