Till Brönner celebrates highest career-chart-entry.
His new album "The Good Life" - released on September 2, 2016 -
immediately entered the GfK-Charts on position six.
The gentlest of provocations often have the most lasting impact. Berlin-based trumpeter Till Brönner is not exactly known for his provocative musical statements, but his latest release, The Good Life, represents something of a challenge, even if that wasn’t his intent at the outset.
Every album tells its own story, and the best results often come when the original plotline twists and turns itself into something entirely different. That’s what happened with The Good Life. Of course, we can just take the album at face-value, as an amazingly laidback reworking of evergreen numbers, which it’s perfectly happy not to “modernise” in any way. Far more exciting, however, is to see it as the latest highpoint in what’s been an unusual career so far...
Till Brönner can rightly be regarded as Germany’s most successful jazz musician, but his fame has spread far beyond the national and even the European scene, thanks to his many appearances in the US, the home of jazz. Indeed on International Jazz Day 2016 he took up an invitation to the White House, something most politicians can only dream of doing. And in playing alongside such legends as Ray Brown, Dave Brubeck and James Moody, he has himself become part of the annals of jazz history.
Brönner can polarise audiences and his fellow musicians as well, of course. His concepts are not always met with unalloyed joy, especially within the jazz world’s inner circle. Nevertheless, he continues to walk his own path undeterred, finding ways in which to challenge the jazz community. That brings us back to the present, and to The Good Life, for which he made the bold decision to revisit a selection of standards, all of which have made history through their vocal interpretations. His aim throughout was to create a specific atmosphere, a sunnier, more lighthearted groove, easygoing but thoughtful, gentle but never superficial. Only at an advanced stage of the project did it become clear how many of these songs had been made famous by Frank Sinatra. It was never Brönner’s intention to make a Sinatra tribute album, however, and it’s precisely because his interpretations are free of any hovering influence, that they bring the listener such enormous listening pleasure.
What’s even more remarkable here is the way Brönner balances his work as vocalist and instrumentalist. Up till now he has been seen as a trumpeter who occasionally sang – now, on The Good Life, we’re suddenly confronted with a singer with two voices. On the issue of this dual challenge, he says, “If I’d spent the whole time thinking about the virtuoso and technical differences between voice and instrument, I wouldn’t have been able to play the trumpet the way I do. And when I was singing, my throat would have tightened up, which would have been a disaster. The only chance I had to pull it off was to see voice and trumpet as inseparable.”
On The Good Life Till Brönner achieves the feat of taking tried-and-tested standards and using them to tell a fresh and original story. That he does it so easily, with a twinkle in his eye, and at times a cheeky grin on his face, proves that he has avoided falling into the trap of treating tradition with too much respect. He doesn’t take himself too seriously either, or worry about which greats of the past he might be measuring himself against. In other words, he simply does it his way.
Get your copy here: https://lnk.to/TB-TheGoodLife
1. The Good Life
2. Sweet Lorraine
3. For All We Know
4. Come Dance with Me
5. Change Partners
6. Love Is Here to Stay
7. I Loves You, Porgy
8. I May Be Wrong
9. O Que Resta
10. I’m Confessin’ that I Love You
11. I’ll Be Seeing You
12. Her Smile
13. In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning
(All tracks arranged by John Clayton)
Till Brönner /trumpet, flugelhorn & vocals
Anthony Wilson /guitar
Larry Goldings /piano
John Clayton /bass
Jeff Hamilton /drums