CD Review: Perry Beekman | Music | Hudson Valley | Hudson Valley; Chronogram
Pin It

CD Review: Perry Beekman 


click to enlarge cd_perry_beekman.jpg

Songbook albums can be, by turns, problematic and illuminating. On the one extreme, there is the risk of the showcased writer/composer overshadowing the performer. On the other, an inspired marriage of subject and interpreter can speak volumes about both. Think of Joe Henderson's classic Lush Life: The Music of Billy Strayhorn, in which the beloved composer's work is recontextualized as adventurous modern jazz. Fortunately, guitarist/vocalist Perry Beekman confidently navigates the potential pitfalls on his second songbook outing. This time, Beekman shines the spotlight on Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart, widely regarded as exemplars of the golden age of American songcraft and an integral part of the canonical body of standards that form the common tongue of jazz.

On Bewitched, Beekman pays homage to the duo's achievements through a series of tasteful and beautifully rendered performances. The album's centerpiece is a lovely solo reading of "It Never Entered My Mind," in which Beekman's tremendous talent on the guitar is on full display. His voice is hushed, matching the rueful tone of the lyric. It is a highlight among highlights. Being as Lorenz Hart's tart lyrics are equal in importance to Richard Rodgers's melodies, it is fitting that Beekman sings as well as he plays. His voice has an appealing "regular guy" quality, owing as much to Dave Frishberg as it does to Nat Cole. Bewitched is a bewitching concoction and well worth revisiting.

Speaking of...

Pin It


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

Hudson Valley Events

submit event
Streets: An Ode to the Outcast @ The Bakery

Streets: An Ode to the Outcast

Jan. 1-Feb. 28 — "Streets: an Ode to the Outcast," a photography exhibit by Kelin Long-Gaye,...

View all of today's events

Latest in Music

Related to Music

  • The Moonlights Sunday Brunch
  • The Moonlights Sunday Brunch

    The Moonlights, a debut musical collaboration for families, is making the rounds at a series of live performances, including two of the upcoming Sunday Brunch at the Falcon in Marlboro.
    • Mar 20, 2017
  • Opera in Phoenicia Park
  • Opera in Phoenicia Park

    With its open-air format, where attendees picnic in the parks and watch the stars emerge during performances, and its $5 youth tickets, the Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice is the perfect place to share with children a love of music and theater, in a variety of styles.
    • Jul 25, 2016
  • More »

More by Alexander Stern

  • CD Review: Tani Tabbal

    • Sep 1, 2015
  • CD Review: New Vocabulary

    Alexander Stern reviews the new album by Ornette Coleman, Jordan McLean, and Amir Ziv.
    • May 1, 2015
  • CD Review: Juice

    Neither Medeski, Martin & Wood nor guitarist John Scofield are strangers to psychedelia, but Juice, their third studio collaboration, harkens back to what many consider to be the genre’s first wave.
    • Apr 1, 2015
  • More »

Hudson Valley Tweets