Blue Note Sessions (Port)
Review Text Classical violinist Nigel Kennedy built his reputation on more than just considerable musical talent--he cultivated an appearance and demeanor of a somewhat surly, slightly dissipated rock star. But Kennedy's influences and interests have always been wide-ranging, including jazz, and with BLUE NOTE SESSIONS he lets his "jazz side" have free reign. He and producer Jay Newland assembled a most formidable crew to accompany him, including drummer/composer Jack DeJohnette, big-toned tenor saxophonist Joe Lovano, and genially versatile pianist Kenny Werner. While Kennedy is not exactly competition for Jean Luc Ponty, he does evoke Ponty in the latter's early, pre-electric career, playing with a direct lyricism and earnest swing. The selection of songs is both eclectic and enticing, including the bluesy "I Almost Lost My Mind" and the subtle groove of "Song For My Father."