Various Artists – Jazz for Dads
Jazz for Dads
(Concord – 2000)
by Matthew S. Robinson
What better gift could there be for the first man in your life than the gift of music? Music to make him think of your special bonds. Music to hum while he goes to get his whuppin’ belt. Jazz music. Jazz for Dads. While some of the thematic connections will be obvious only to the truly hip Daddy-o, lyrical renditions of some appropriate numbers make this album a pleasure for any pater. For the ladies, there is Rosemary Clooney’s timeless take on Cole Porter’s “My Heart Belongs To Daddy” (a song which gave new meaning to “making the team”). For the guys, Dave Frishberg reminds Dad of his good fortune in having a son in “You’re A Lucky Guy” (though Ken Peplowski’s smoky sax swing with “My Buddy” might be even more appropriate).
Peplowski’s reedy bend of Duke Ellington’s “Mr. Gentle And Mr. Cool” may musically describe how you see Dad (and hopefully so). Other songs, however, are a bit more esoteric and extraneous. The trio of Month Alexander, Ray Brown and Herb Ellis do a good job with the slow and mellow “Put Your Little Foot Right Out,” but the connection to Father’s Day is a bit harder to place.
Similarly with Dave McKenna’s tickling of “When You Wish Upon A Star.” While it might be nice to think that your folks wished for you, I’m sure you have given them reason to diffuse this supposition. And what about Gene Harris’s key run through “The Best Things In Life Are Free”? Is that to remind Dad to overlook that atrocious tie you got him last year?
Regardless of why some of the songs were chosen, they all act as an appropriate gift which can be relished by the aficionado and enjoyed by the musically literate. If your dad don’t know “God Bless the Child,” God bless you.
© 2001 M. S. Robinson, ARR