The Jazz.com Blog
September 10, 2009 · 0 comments
With a lovely tone, sophisticated lyricism, and a wonderful sense of swing on classics like “Opportunity,” “Tournesol”, “I Won’t Dance” and the original “Light” from his CD of the same name, Ben Powell plays swing through modern ears, relishishing the genre he “self-discovered” after solid training in classical violin. Enlisting a solid rhythm section – veteran bassist Bruno Raberg, fellow Berklee alumnus Cedric Hanriot on piano, and drummer Devin Drobka, Powell has put his considerable technique to work in his improvisations on uptempo tunes and in ballads like “Andre.” Powell chose his sidemen wisely for the Tanglewood date. Raberg, an experienced hand in laying down a walk, a pocket, or a groove, rounded and underscored the sound, building a smart solo around the melody line of “I Won’t Dance.” Adding spice and snap with Rhodes and polyrhythms on acoustic piano, and swagger to a more conventional conception of jazz violin, Cedric Hanriot enhanced the group’s sound, with Drobka’s tasteful rhythmic underpinnings. Powell’s set was very satisfying listening, and it will be interesting to hear how his music develops.
This blog entry posted by Roanna Forman. For links to the rest of Forman’s coverage of the festival, click here.