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Bill Frisell - When You Wish Upon A Star / Jazz Police review

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When You Wish Upon A Star, the latest project from legendary guitarist/composer Bill Frisell comprises music from iconic film and television scores, the Sony/Okeh LP is conceived not only as an homage, but as a celebration of music-making with longtime collaborators and their collective commitment to refined interpretation of material.  Produced by Lee Townsend (Loudon Wainwright III, John Scofield, Carrie Rodriguez), the LP brings together an all-star "dream team" of Frisell's frequent partners in crime: violist Eyvind Kang, drummer Rudy Royston, bass player Thomas Morgan and vocalist Petra Haden. Frisell describes the group of friends' unique process as beginning with listening to as many versions of the pieces as possible and committing any lyrics to heart, followed by total immersion in the original score (harmony, phrasing, arrangement), learning the notes and hours of practice. "Finally, when it's in the blood," he says, the musicians are ready to deliver their interpretations.

Frisell enjoys a kind of Teflon status among musicians and music lovers.  He is a stalker of many musical domains and a nomad, too. Whether he's combing through the Beatle catalogue, exploring electronica via Brazil, or covering sixties surf music as he's done in recent outings, he seems to be not only tolerated but embraced by the so-called gatekeepers.

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