Frisell Plays Lennon featuring Bill Frisell, Greg Leisz, Tony Scherr, and Kenny Wollesen

Frisell plays Lennon at the NAC Studio. That alone is enough to cause salivating and Frisell and his band (Kenny Wollesen – drums; Greg Leisz – pedal steel and acoustic guitar; Tony Scherr – bass) did not disappoint last night at Ottawa Jazz Festival. Interpretations ranged from sublime melancholy through to intense driving grooves with Frisell and his band-mates smiling, laughing and generally having a great time. Smattered throughout the set were interesting pedals and tools to mimic, for instance, a sitar sound...the interesting part is that the slide guitar used many of the pedals, not just Frisell. While all four musicians displayed fantastic talents I thought the drummer, Wollesen, in particular stood out, especially on the heavy and psychedelic Strawberry Fields Forever, staying deep in the pocket and maintaining the rhythm even in the face of some offbeat and eventually, minimalist stretches. Revolution was a tub thumper and represented a peak in sound, rocking the shit out of the captivated audience; Mother was a surprise choice but provided some great overarching guitar lines. Love may have been the shortest encore I've ever heard, seemed to last less than 2 minutes....not complaining, mind you.

 
 

Flying
Nowhere Man
Mother
Revolution
You've Really Got a Hold on Me
Please Please Me
If I Fell
Strawberry Fields
Love