|BACK||By: Michelle King New York, NY|
"Friends" CD Released 09/27/11
Record Label: Mack Avenue Records
Photos By: Gabriel King Houis
Stanley Jordan Solo at the Iridium NYC October 24, 2011
This was the first set on the last night of a series of shows at Iridium NYC that previously featured Stanley Jordan with special guests Bucky Pizzarelli and Sharon Isbin, playing from his newest CD "Friends" that includes Christian McBride, Regina Carter, Kenny Garrett, Ronnie Laws, Bucky Pizzarelli, and Nicolas Payton just to name a few.
Tonight was Stanley Jordan's night to shine solo during an intimate show that featured Jordan onstage with his instruments (guitar and piano) along with an undeniable brilliance that shows his passion and love for what he does.
I am not sure exactly what was more mesmerizing--listening to his original, layered interpretations or witnessing his incredible moves in playing.
Stanley Jordan is a poet in motion, moving his pick like a bow on the strands of his guitar, switching hands at will, sweeping piano keys with one hand and playing an intricate melody on his guitar, both at the same time in a signature style he pioneered early in his multi-decade career.
Surrounding cameras were clicking constantly and furiously like paparazzi to the point where Jordan asked one to move away from the stage as the noise of the camera and hovering was posing a distraction. To try to capture Jordan, even on a small stage, is a challenge because the music travels far and fast.
You watch him and realize it is not a concert in the sense that he is engaged with the audience and plays to us.
It is more like standing in the doorway of his private studio where you see the art happening. There is a world of music inside Stanley Jordan, and as he humbly stands and plays, you hear glimpses of songs in notes that weave into lengthy passages that take you places you don't expect.
When I finally recognized "Sounds of Silence," there was already so much more I heard before I connected it to the familiar notes of the song.
Jordan does not play a song, he creates an experience of what the song means to him.
Whether it was a Mozart composition or Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven" you would think there is an orchestra behind him in the richness of sound he produces.
Over the Rainbow" was lovely and poignant and the finale of Eleanor Rigby was echos of Jordan at the beginning of his career with the maturity of excelling at what Stanley Jordan does best--perfecting his play in each note.
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