Pat Metheny: Lone Jack
Pat Metheny (guitar)
Pat Metheny Group (ECM 1114 825 593-2)
Composed by Pat Metheny.
Recorded: Oslo, Norway, January 1978
Rating: 92/100 (learn more)
It is 1982 or 1983. We've brought our cooler and blanket and spread ourselves across the grass of Hartford's Bushell Park for a free Pat Metheny Group concert! There are 30,000 of us. It was a bit warm as I remember. Mike Nock opened the show. I remember seeing some guys set up microphones on stands to record the concert. They were not with the band. Some cops came and made them take down the mikes. Hartford holds a special place in Metheny's heart, so he told the crowd he was going to play a long time. They played a bit too long, really. But I will always remember how that crowd reacted to familiar Metheny classics such as "Lone Jack." They were taken away as the sound wafted through the city.
"Lone Jack" appeared on the band's first album. It quickly became a big hit. The tune hits the ground running as Metheny wastes no time getting into the swing of things. The melody is beautifully simple. Metheny's playing can be described as skittering. Bassist Mark Egan and drummer Danny Gottlieb provide texture and pace while Lyle Mays adds some very effective keyboard work. There are enough jazz chops to keep this critic happy. There is nothing bad you can say about the piece. It just makes you feel good.
There was really something about those early Metheny compositions. Somehow he had found a way to incorporate engaging jazz-rock melodies with the high-volume electricity of the fusion genre without scaring all the girls away! Prior to Metheny's appearance on the scene most of us male fusion fans attended shows dateless. He made it safe for us to ask again.
Reviewer: Walter Kolosky