Gianni Mimmo
One Way Ticket


Hey, see what I found in my mailbox: a solo CD featuring the sax soprano (and some reciting, too: the CD is bookended by two texts, respectively by T. S. Eliot and T. Scialoja) by an artist I have never heard of before (which, of course, means absolutely nothing). Let's have a look at the cover. The repertory: alongside a few self-penned tracks written by Gianni Mimmo himself, we also have compositions by Steve Lacy (The Bath), Thelonious Monk (Ask Me Now and Introspection), Charles Mingus (Reincarnation Of The Lovebird), Duke Ellington (Paris Blues), Roscoe Mitchell (Jamaican Farewell), Anton Webern (Die Sonne, op. 14) and F. Cumar (Furniture).

On first listening, Monk's Ask Me Now puzzled me a lot: it sounded like Lacy! Which could sound as a compliment (and in a way I guess it is). But taken as a whole, the CD reveals what is its worrying trait: it sounds like Lacy. On one hand, this says of a technical mastering of the instrument. On the other, of narrow horizons - a fact which appears all the more disconcerting the more they are considered side by side with the technical part of the story. It was once said of Lacy that he had found himself inside Monk. Here one could maybe say that what was found inside Lacy is a lot more than what one found inside oneself.

Opening my ears to the max, it wasn't impossible for me to find traces of Mingus inside Reincarnation Of The Lovebird or traces of Mitchell inside Jamaican Farewell, but both are seen through a prism so Lacy-like to make one quite puzzled. The same is also true of the originals - for instance, check Collateral, Highway Tale and Unsaid E.

It's true that repeated listening sometimes appeared to offer different perspectives, but it's also true that - while busy at the computer - I happened to ask myself why on earth had I put a CD by Steve Lacy inside my CD player when I had so much work to do!

So? I'm really puzzled.

Beppe Colli

© Beppe Colli 2006 | May 12, 2006