Shelly Manne: I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face

Listening to André Previn's jazz recordings, I sometimes get the impression that he is out slumming . . . Having a good time, but not taking the proceedings very seriously. Too often he is content to throw out some clichés or play around with cocktail piano mannerisms. On this lovely Lerner & Lowe standard, he merely tinkles for most of the three minutes of the song. Manne tries to add some spice on the drums, engaging in a playful call-and-response during the melody statement. But Previn is not in the mood for musical banter. He plays it straight and simple. A clever bit of Lydian magic at the two-and-a-half minute mark reminds us that this is, in fact, an example of jazz piano. But for the rest of the song, we might as well be sitting in the lounge in the Marriott lobby. Rex Harrison did it with more soul.

December 07, 2007 · 0 comments


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