Being Candid, Kennedy Plays Better Than Villa Did Today...
The playfulness is infectious because it seems full of affection for the original songs, and of course it is virtuoso in its frolicking. Knowing such famous songs so well the listener expects to hear their melodies, and does, and so it is the dancing around and in these which adds further delight. Summertime, however, takes its time wonderfully to get to that melodic line, the violin strains building and building, bluesy and swirling, and the brooding pace with sharp string hits and then light touches is tauntingly compelling. As is its psychedelic close: far-out.
The accompanying ensemble of players add their own brilliant tones, like the flute in Summertime, and the players are:
Howard Alden & Rolf “die Kobra” Bussalb (guitars)
Beata Urbanek-Kalinowska (cello)
Tomasz “Insomnia” Kupiec (bass)
Members of the Orchestra of Life: Alicja Smietana & Sonja Schebeck (violins), David Heath (flutes)
with Nigel Kennedy (violin, viola, piano, Hammond, harpsichord)
Porgy and Bess is beautiful, by the way.