Here’s the story: Classic lineup. Two guitars, a bass, a drumset. „For good music, that is really all you need – just two guitars, a bass and a drumset.“ He who spoke those words – he really would know. It was Lou Reed.
In Jazz Music, this lineup is at least unusual. Insiders would mention Marc Johnson’s „Bass Desires“. Great Music, too. Still: The way that Rudy Linka chose is a different one.
Two guitars, bass, drums – the classic lineup… of a garage band. The name that instantly comes to mind with this setup must be Creedence Clearwater Revival – albums like „Bayou Country“, „Willy And The Poorboys“ and „Cosmos Factory“. Folk, Country, Blues – the roots of Pop Music. Rock’n’Roll as a lifestyle.
„Lucky Southern“ is all of that: A Soundtrack accompanying an imaginary roadmovie through the South-West of the US. A musical trip through a landscape that immediately captures the viewer with it’s sheer vastness. A Journey through the villages of the West – places of so many different cultures – every single one of them savouring their heritages. And thus being foundation and tradition of the American Style. Of course, this trip is idealised and in the best sense of the word it might even be considered romantic. But which good roadmovie is not?
Still: „Lucky Southern“ is far away from bonfire romantic and the guitars of the Wild Wild West. You will find the ballads – opposing to what many „confessing“ Country Jazz musicians write – to be honest and simple but never shallow and cheap. And the Rock’n’Roll is really homemade. Including deliciously loud and distorted guitars.
All three guitar players manage to bring their very own style into this band. Rudy Linka’s melodic playing in dialogue with John Abercrombie’s elegant eloquence and the daredevil style of John Scofield.
The tripp ends with the only Jazz Standard of the programme, Keith Jarret’s „Lucky Southern“. But not what you would expect… here it is not the often heard bossa nova but a Folk Ballad purely devoted to it’s melody. Rudy Linka solo on the acoustic guitar.
There could not be a happier ending for the lucky south…
Rudy Linka on recording „Lucky Southern“:
When I came to New York in 1985 I was so lucky to meet John and Sco and we became really close friends. Later, John happened to save my life from electrocution during our „festival performance“ in 1993 and Sco and I almost got arrested playing jazz on the Charles Bridge in Prague few years later. The passing by TV News crew saved us – thanks Ota!
Kenny and I met at Berklee College of Music in Boston and we both moved to New York City one year later. I remember our first Xmas eve together. It was freezing, snowing and Kenny got a $80 ticket for running a red light on a bicycle. He moved back to California for few years and had a yellow Beetle with no working brakes. No good anywhere but especially not in San Francisco. Good to have him back in NYC.
At 27, Dan is the „kid “ in the band but is such a mature and inventive player that I feel I know him for my entire life.
The songs were written with Kenny, Dan, John and Sco in mind and I hope you can hear the relaxed atmosphere in every song. Almost like getting together with your buddies at a front porch of a house somewhere in the South.
Well, here it is ……just sit back, relax and enjoy.