Deep Blue Organ Trio

Folk Music

origin 82489

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MUSIC REVIEW BY John Ephland, Downbeat, Jan 2008

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You get a sense of where this music's going to go right away, and how tight these musicians are as a trio. The opener, "A Deeper Blue," is a medium-slow crawler that can expose any rough edges to a band's cohesion. The trio moves ever so gently off the soulful, bluesy head with the slightest restraint - riding on drummer Greg Rockingham's light, rolling snare- as they hesitate before diving in. Call it a measure of tightness, a lucky musical break or a planned move. The Deep Blue Organ Trio speaks as one.

The trio relies on the organ-trio formula of blues, some pop and ballads. It swings and is finely produced by guitarist Bobby Broom, with each player heard exceptionally well. Folk Music is the Chicago-based trio's third album, and it builds where the others left off. The opener segues into more upbeat fare, the snappy "This I Dig Of You," Broom's links to Wes Montgomery and organist Chris Forman's (a little less so) to Jimmy Smith show that these guys have experience playing in a trio. They leaven "I Thought About You" with some nice chord substitutions; extra grease from Foreman offers an edge despite the easygoing groove.

One of the stranger covers comes with The Beatles' "She's Leaving Home," played true to form at a slow, mournful pace. Foreman and Broom take turns as they move through the song's extended melody lines, eventually giving way to a two-chord meditation and solos. The trio manages to convey some independence from the blues and still sound like themselves. On the other hand, they turn the Ohio Players' "Sweet Sticky Thing" and Stephanie Mills' "Never Knew Love Like This Before" into bona fide swingers. Likewise, the sweet Latin tune "Ceora" and the slightly Latinized "Short Story" sound like they were made for an Organ Trio.






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