Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Ewa Bem – Loves The Beatles (Polish Jazz Vol.84 Deluxe, 1984)

Ewa Bem - vocals, background vocals (1, 2, 6-8, 10-12 ), percussion (50)

Marek Stefankiewicz - Fender Rhodes, acoustic piano (1, 9)
Winicjusz Chróst - guitars (1, 2, 6-7, 9, 11), drums programming (2, 6-7)
Arkadiusz Żak - bass guitar (1, 9)
Tomasz Szukalski - tenor sax (1, 6, 9-10, 12)
Wojciech Karolak - Fender Rhodes (2), acoustic piano (2, 6), synthesizers (4, 6, 7)
Wojciech Kowalewski - percussion (2-6, 8, 10-12) drums (3-5, 7-8, 10-12)
Jerzy Kaczmarek - Fender Rhodes (3-5, 8, 10-12), synthesizers (3-5, 8, 10-12), acoustic piano (11)
Romuald Frey - guitar (3-5, 8, 10-12)
Mieczysław Jurecki - bass guitar (3-5, 8, 10-12)
Henryk Majewski - trumpet (3-6, 8, 10)
Stanisław Mizeracki - trumpet (3-5, 8, 10)
Dariusz Macioch - trombone (3-5, 8, 10)
Roman Syrek - trombone (3-5, 8, 10)
Andrzej Jagodziński - French Horn (9)

Loves The Beatles (Polish Jazz Vol.84 Deluxe, 1984)

This is quite an unusual album on which Polish Jazz singer Ewa Bem undertakes the difficult task of interpreting twelve songs by the Beatles, a concept which usually very quickly turns into a disaster. However, this time the result is quite surprising, with the original songs being arranged often very faraway from their original form, rhythm and atmosphere, which is actually quite interesting and certainly shows a lot of potential. Bem’s vocal qualities are beyond reproach and she is supported by an excellent team of the best Polish players, like saxophonist Tomasz Szukalski, trumpeter Henryk Majewski and many others, which contributes significantly to the overall result. In retrospect the use of synthesizers, which is the dreaded trademark of the 1980s, sounds pretty dated today, but that unfortunately can’t be helped. It is certainly interesting to revisit this album to get a fresh perspective as to what can be done with Pop material in the Jazz sphere. Worth investigating!

Track listing: 1. I Will [04:31]; 2. Here, There And Everywhere [03:57]; 3. Get Back [01:56]; 4. A Hard Day's Night [03:14]; 5. Something [03:16]; 6. You're Going To Lose That Girl [03:41]; 7. Drive My Car
[03:31]; 8. The Fool On The Hill [03:03]; 9. I'll Follow The Sun [03:50]; 10. Blackbird [03:40]; 11. Here Comes The Sun [02:37]; 12. Strawberry Fields Forever [04:13]

By Maciej Nowotny

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