Bassist Will Goble offers a heavy dose of blues on Consider The Blues, his second CD as a leader, featuring thoughtful arrangements of folk songs, reworkings of standards and classic jazz works, along with his creative originals. His band for this session includes Tardy, pianist Louis Heriveaux and frequent collaborator Dave Potter on drums.
The decades-old "Another Man Done Gone" is powered by the soulful, expressive vocal of Tabreeca Woodside, who makes this troubling song - originally sung by chain gangs - her own, with Goble's dramatic scoring and Tardy's vocal-like tenor adding to the protest. The tension is relieved a bit with the leader's darting "Johnson's Magic Umbrella", dedicated to pianist Austin Johnson, with whom he has worked in the Jason Marsalis Quartet, the musicians negotiating the playful tune's many sudden twists and turns with ease. The late piano great Mary Lou Williams is recognized with her emotional "Dirge Blues", Goble and Potter providing a superb rhythmic canvas to enable Heriveaux to conjure Williams' spirit at the piano. The leader takes a fresh approach to George Gershwin's timeless "It Ain't Necessarily So" (from the opera Porgy and Bess) by opening with an introspective solo, which leads to its well-known theme in a roundabout fashion, interweaving surprising interludes between choruses and giving Tardy plenty of space for improvising. The lush ballad "Belle Isle", written for Goble's wife, is also a detour from the blues menu as Tardy delivers a lyrical performance worthy of the master he has become over the past two decades. The standard "Three Little Words" is pure swing and lots of fun without sounding the least bit old-fashioned.