So it happened, I’m writing again about a ‘jazz guitar’ album. Twice a week? Am I looking at a new musical path? Well, no.
I do, however, looking for lyricists, people whose melodic phrases, emotions and sensitivity are outstanding. Or in short, like in folk music, I’m looking for storytellers to feed the child in me with stories about far away places and forgotten people.
Along comes Pat Metheny and Charlie Haden and release Beyond the Missouri Sky (Short Stories) in 1997.
I haven’t been to Missouri so I don’t know how the skies there, but it is indeed, very much, an album of short stories.
You know stories. They carry a mission. They should take your essence in a specific time and transform your being into something slightly different. You don’t have to become a changed person, just slightly different. You get that extra information in your brain, banging in the cells, trying to find correlation to your own life, memory, existence. When it finds, the info and your past or present collide. Sometimes they bring new resolutions, sometimes they are just a plain emotion simulators. The art of storytellling is sacred and should be done with a great care. Like baking. Put exactley the right amount of sugar, just a tiny bit of oil, not a whole lot of pecans and careful with the raisins. Storytelling in music, is exactley like that.
Some of the tracks are cover versions, some are original. Pat and Charlie’s playing is hypnotizing. I find myself staring at the stereo with a stupid smile. You know how weird you sometimes feel when you’re spending too much time in the sun? like half stoned-half empowered by the strengths of the sun? This is in a way how the album makes me feel.
When a guitarist-composer write with the task of storytelling in mind, playing less notes, allow some fresh air to exist between the notes – it passes a feeling of lying in the park for four hours in the sun. You’re ready to go home, and you’re not the same person for the rest of the day.
It’s funny, in the end, we’re all kids.