Fazz: Now & Then

Newest Release! FAZZ:Now&Then

"...a genuinely remarkable record, a collection that not only refuses to sit still for a moment, it’s adamant that listeners won’t want to, either

About the Songs

All Things Work for Good (Instrumental)
A forested performance of an infinite canon, attributed to and truncated by 'ardenti caliendrum' (latin). Midi translation by Michael McInnis.

Charles Ives
A six string arrangement of a four string masterpiece that speaks at best to the passion of following one's heart and at worst to the distraction of multi-tasking. Accompanied on cello by Eugene Friesen.

In Reverence
A vision of the unity of humanity - thankfully acknowledging the gift of life and love - featuring the voice of Theresa Thomason, the piano and saxophone of David Mann. Edward Mottau – drums / Kent Palmer - bass.

Under This Roof
A comforting and reassuring welcome home. Eddie Mottau - guitar / Kent Palmer – bass / Edward Mottau - drums.

This Song (Bahia Skies)
An evening, a sunrise – a shared memory linked to a seemingly unforgettable Brazilian melody. Sue Evans – conga / Dick Kniss – bass / Paul Sullivan – piano / Michael McInnis - midiVibes

Leonard's Toaster
A neighborhood story with universal implications. Kent Palmer – bass.

Love with a Capital L
An exploration of the origin and meaning of love. Kent Palmer – bass / Micheal McInnis - midiWurlitzer piano / Edward Mottau – drums / Robby Coffin – electric guitar.

Little Sweet (Instrumental)
A string trio composition in three movements. Cam Sauzin – cello / Doug Cameron – violin.

Waiting for Angels
A musically evocative visit to the local cinema for the latest romantic thriller. Kent Palmer – bass / Edward Mottau – drums / Michael McInnis – midiFluegel, midiPiano, midiStrings, midiVibes, midiHarp, midiAngels.

Fun Police
Each of us has the capacity to offer goodwill, to bring lightness into desolation…not as an escape from the challenges of living, but rather to reclaim life and love fallen victim to depression. Kent Palmer – bass / Edward Mottau – drums / Michael McInnis - midiMellotron.

Formara (Instrumental)
A bossa-nova instrumental featuring Paul Winter on saxophone and the additional keyboard and scat-singing talents of Henrique Eisenmann.

I'll be Seeing You
The classic from the 40's that speaks to a sense of separation and the timeless memories of a relationship past. Kent Palmer – bass / Michael McInnis – midiPiano, midiStrings.

To the Archives! (Instrumental)
Introduced by a musical interlude borrowed from PAULand, there is a tranformation from the 'now' of FAZZ to the 'then' of this project, revealing of earlier musical bridges between folk and jazz.

Wonder Why (Instrumental)
A performance on koto recorded during a Peter, Paul and Mary tour in Japan and accompanied by Paul Prestopino – mandolin / Dick Kniss – bass.

Long Lonely Night
Arguably interesting chord changes supporting pretentious angst and reclaimed from an acetate of original tunes - recorded for a prospective publishing house in 1960.

Pony (Instrumental)
A musical response to a Rebecca Haley McCall painting of a horse and his owner in Baghdad. Played on a suitcase guitar built by David LaPlante with a dressing room overdub by John Miller – bass.

There are No Words
A stunning and moving piece written in response to the 9/11 attack on the twin towers, performed and recorded during a Peter, Paul and Mary tour, accompanied by Paul Prestopino – mandolin / Dick Kniss – bass.

God Bless the Child
The remembrance of an arrangement created for Mary Travers with Dick Kniss – bass / Sue Evans – drums.

The Water is Wide
With a new verse added to a performance recorded during a Peter, Paul and Mary tour while Betty was away in France.

The Lady Says
One of the earliest and most spontaneous performances of a song that addresses the ambivalence with which my scat-singing is received by my wife. Additional brushes/rhythm overdubbed by an unidentified 'ghost drummer' at some later date.

Release Date: February 22, 2022

Fazz. /faz/ noun. category of music combining Folk music and Jazz. First known public reference attributed to Dave Brubeck Quartet member Paul Desmond during tour with trio Peter, Paul and Mary at the midpoint of the 20th century. A fusion of styles characterized by musical subtlety, improvisation, syncopation, and often a regular or forceful rhythm. While brass, woodwind instruments and piano are often associated with jazz, the guitar and other stringed instruments are often found in support of those pieces containing a more lyrical or reflective content.

I'm a great believer in 'alternative' chords...color chords they're sometimes called. If you have an ear for musical nuance, you can readily hear the difference between an A major chord and its smoky, mysterious cousin the A major 7th. I'll admit the application of these chordal variations should be judicious, as they may not always be appropriate to the task. Case in point: tuning backstage with Peter Yarrow and being cautioned that one does not use a Major 7th while playing a Woody Guthrie tune. But still, every song is not a sing-along, and every melody deserves its own place in the sun.

The songs contained in FAZZ:NOW&THEN are a reflection of how the interpretative nature of jazz has impacted my creative impulses over these past 60 years. To me, the framing of words in a musical setting makes possible a 3rd interpretative window; even beyond the emotional and intellectual meaning of a song. A lyric, particularly one that tells a story, has a unique impact if presented within a chord structure that surprises (and sometimes challenges) the expectations of the listener.

And so, herein are the results of this 'burning desire' to bring a broader musical palette to the lyric and power of folk music. In these Covid times, it's been frustrating to be working long-distance with my fellow musicians, yet rewarding knowing that any space between us has been 'covered in the heart'.

With much thanks and credit to:

  • Robert Milstein, Co-production
  • Ed Mottau, Co-production
  • Jim Mason, Co-production, Mastering, Neworld Publishing
  • John Stuart (Stuart Audio), Co-production, Recording, Mixing Engineer
  • Mike Clark (Clark Creative), Recording, Mixing Engineer
  • Tom Swift (Swift Kick Productions), Mixing Engineer
  • Jim Brady, Mastering
  • Sally Farr, Graphics
  • Joyce Hall, Neworld Logistics
  • David Snyder, Neworld Media Integration
  • Betty Stookey, Patience, Understanding, Perceptive Critiques
Front Cover: Click to Enlarge
Back Cover: Click to Enlarge