FireflyMusic: Kenny Barron, Lyrics: Janice Jarrett

“Just as lightning reveals part the way, as we stumble in blind disarray, wait for wisdom to come like a spark. Even fireflies light up the dark.”   This is one of the first set of lyrics I wrote for Kenny Barron’s compositions. I grew up first in North Carolina, and remember catching and releasing fireflies on summer nights. My grandparents’ wooden swing hung in a corner of the wraparound porch with sweet honeysuckle vines within reach. The last verse is by the late bassist Chris White of Rhythm Associates, who I met through the Muse Jazz Program in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, Here is a little taste of the arrangement for 5 voices for this song by Borrowed Time. That too will be available here soon

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Kenny Barron

Kenny Barron

A recent description of Kenny Barron: “One of the most articulate and polished mainstream-to-bop improvisers in the jazz of the last 40 years.” (The Guardian). For years the NYT labeled him the “pianist of choice,” certainly true for Stan Getz in their last legendary performances. Their duets are heartbreakingly lyrical and informed by the clarity found in the best of the genre. But Barron’s many sessions as leader attest to his being a prolific composer as well. Being an NEA Jazz Master, among other accolades, is a reflection of the high esteem he holds. I was drawn to his compositions decades ago while in NYC, The desire to sing his melodies, surrounded by the complex coherence of his harmonic sensibility, however challenging, was compelling. More than two dozen of our collaborative lyrics and songs will soon become available in the Shop.


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