The Procession


“The Procession” is one of the earliest compositions of Kenny Barron’s I wrote lyrics for after I worked for Kenny’s brother Bill Barron in Bed-Stuy’s Jazz Workshops.  I am fond of Kenny’s jazz waltzes and often get caught in the feelings they inspire. The kind of dreamy feel of this one gave me the setting of a walk in bright sunlight among flowers. “Warmed by the sun, I flushed, drunk with light. Two bare feet” found a path others made and distant music is heard.  The lyrics hint at the understanding that we all come from the examples and inspirations of those who “come before.” (The sample is from Kenny Barron’s CD “Peruvian Blue”.)

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“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 a 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 eventually be available in the Shop.


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