Ross Simpson of Woodbury Studios has produced a new video, launched today, entitled “Ain’t Nobody’s Business.” It features the duo of pianist LIAM NOBLE and drummer PAUL CLARVIS, who together also form half of the band Pigfoot. The video also features “Goodnight My Someone” sung by guest Naima Slany Clarvis. Sebastian interviewed Paul Clarvis about it:
London Jazz News: You have been working with Liam for years, and yet I guess he can still surprise you with the direction he wants to take every time…
Paul Clarvis: Whenever Liam plays, it always sounds to me like there’s something serious going on… it’s a conversational style, so there’s room for input… When we meet up socially, he often has thought provoking and sometimes unconventional points of view and reference… and I get a similar stimulation when we play together… Hopefully, neither of us play in a particularly pre-meditated way… so the music sounds like we pretty much feel at the time…
Obviously we’ve both done long musical apprenticeships… but if we’ve had a coffee or a curry and a few pints, hopefully that will come through in the music too… and I’m not talking flatulence here.
LJN: What kind of tunes draw you both in?
PC: In a nutshell… ones we can whistle. I like to play tunes and words that I’m moved by… They aren’t always jazz standards. I also love the blues which seems to musically and lyrically redeem the often melancholy subject matter… “One day weve got ham and bacon, next day there’s nothing shaking.”
LJN: I have a memory that you once made a rather wonderful duo album “Starry Starry Night.”
PC: We had been playing together many years before we recorded that album… Initially meeting in Moondogs band in the very early nineties. We were very lucky to be able to record that first duo album in Studio 1, Abbey Road…it’s a pretty calm space and I think that was reflected in how we played on that occasion. A great team around us helped us present our best side, especially Andy Dudman the engineer, Sean Magee on mastering and Paper Giant who did the artwork.
LJN: This video – where was it recorded / who did it / what’s the story?
PC: Well I’ve participated in videos with both Babelfish and Pigfoot and got the idea from that really… It seems that a Youtube video is the current popular vehicle for floating your musical boat…
I have done plenty of commercial projects with Ross, Simon and Graham at Woodbury Studios and they agreed to record and film us… They roped in Ben Sommers, a very experienced picture editor. I was delighted with what these people brought to the project. The recording was done one evening and took 3 or 4 hours and 1 or 2 bottles of wine… We approached it like a gig and did a couple of takes of maybe 10 tunes, then selected the ones we liked most…I hope people enjoy them.
LJN: And you have a special guest too?
PC: I sent Liam the sheet music for Goodnight my Someone … He liked it and wanted to know how I found it. I told him that my daughter, Naima, had been given it by her singing teacher at school… After I first heard Naima sing it, I couldn’t imagine it without her. So we asked her to sing it with us… We did 2 takes, this was the first one…
LJN: And you and Liam have a new Fats Waller project in the making?
PC: Well… Mark Lewandowski asked us both to do a gig with him at the the Kansas Smitty Club…
He had the idea of doing Fats Waller tunes… It went so well that he approached Mike Janisch’s record label, who are releasing a live recording next Easter… Mark has organised a Vortex gig in the London Jazz Festival in November and is piecing together a tour for April 2017… As well as playing bass, he sings on a couple of tunes…and he keeps me and Liam on the straight and narrow.
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