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Post new topic "Away With You" Mary Halvorson 8tet CD (w/pedal steel)
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Author Topic:  "Away With You" Mary Halvorson 8tet CD (w/pedal steel)
Susan Alcorn


From:
Baltimore, MD, USA
Post Posted 13 Nov 2016 11:25 am     Reply with quote

For the very few who might have interest in this (it's not a country or straight ahead jazz) . . .

Mary Halvorson has released a new CD, Away With You with an octet that features the pedal steel guitar (yours truly, for better or worse) pretty heavily in solo, duo and group context. In the three weeks since the CD came out, it's received rave from the NY Times, the Wall Street Journal, Downbeat Magazine, Jazz, All About Jazz, the Quietus. Mary is an incredible guitarist and one of the true geniuses in today's music. The production on the album is beautiful, and the record is, in my opinion, well-worth checking out.

This link contains three pieces from the album, the last one with a 2 1/2 minute pedal steel guitar solo:

http://davidbreskin.com/records/away-with-you/


Here are two videos from a live show in August:

Spirit Splitter (no.54) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMm1J_sHSx8

Fog Bank (no.56) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6e84_L7zsak (this one contains an extended psg solo)


Reviews:

NY Times:
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/29/arts/music/mary-halvorson-away-with-you-interview.html

Something Else! Reviews:
http://somethingelsereviews.com/2016/11/10/mary-halvorson-octet-away-2016/


The album is listed as 17 on Billboard in the "traditional jazz" category, so it's pretty widely available - bandcamp, Amazon, iTunes, Downtown Music Gallery, etc.






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Mike Neer


From:
NJ
Post Posted 13 Nov 2016 7:27 pm     Reply with quote

This is a remarkable recording, and Susan's footprints are all over it. I really marvel at her playing. Really fascinating band and music.
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'Steelonious' on Bandcamp
mikeneer.com
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Susan Alcorn


From:
Baltimore, MD, USA
Post Posted 27 Nov 2016 12:47 pm     Reply with quote

Thanks Mike.

Here's an NPR story (audio) about Mary which, toward the end, has some clips from the album.

http://www.npr.org/2016/11/27/503446419/why-mary-halvorson-sounds-like-no-other-guitarist
_________________
www.susanalcorn.net

"So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray."
- Mary Oliver


Last edited by Susan Alcorn on 27 Nov 2016 7:14 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Bryan Daste


From:
Portland, Oregon, USA
Post Posted 27 Nov 2016 6:58 pm     Reply with quote

Nice!
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Susan Alcorn


From:
Baltimore, MD, USA
Post Posted 2 Jan 2017 5:56 pm     Reply with quote

I'm really happy that this album has gotten some nice reviews and made some "best of" lists.

"Away With You" was on the top ten list for best albums of 2016 in the New York Times (best album of the year), Chicago Reader (best album of the year), NPR, LA Times, Denver Post, The Atlantic, All About Jazz, GoErie, El PaĆ­s (Spain), and Quietus (UK)

It also received rave reviews in Downbeat, The Wire, Jazz Times, Wall Street Journal, Point of Departure, Avant Music News, Dusted Magazine, PopMatters, Something Else!, Sputnik Music, Jazz daGama, Citizen Jazz (France), and the NYC Jazz Record among others.

This album has a lot of pedal steel guitar on it including two songs that have long (two or three minute) steel solos. I think it's a pleasant album to listen to, but it's not an "easy listening" record. There are no Ray Price shuffles, no gentle swing, and there are no easy comparisons with's traditionally known as jazz (though it's all in there, and the group is composed of jazz musicians). Mary started out on guitar playing Hendrix, etc. but studied, played with, and came up as a professional musician through the music of Anthony Braxton. There is plenty of form, tightly written scores, lots of improvisation, a little funk, and some rock influences as well, but what I really like is that the music breathes. So if you're interested in listening to something different, perhaps challenging, and with the pedal steel guitar in a different context than you're accustomed to hearing, you might enjoy this record.

I don't mean (or like) to toot my own horn; I just want you to know that this music is out there and exists. There, I'm done.
_________________
www.susanalcorn.net

"So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray."
- Mary Oliver
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Martin Abend


From:
Berlin, Germany
Post Posted 10 Jan 2017 3:07 pm     Reply with quote

I really love the album and your playing is stellar, as always. I only wish there would have been a vinyl issue as well...
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