So, let’s start out 2018 with Marzio Scholten, Kit Downes & Bill Frisell, because you’re probably hungover and could use something peaceful


Happy new year.  I’m just saying right now, before we go any further, 2018 sure as hell better be an improvement over 2017.  I’m gonna lay down some positive vibes with this post to get things moving in the right direction.

Speaking of things that are right, here’s something that proves there was still much to be grateful for in 2017.  Marzio Scholten put out a solo guitar album nearly one year ago.  We Never Left Town is full-on Americana folk, which isn’t really in this site’s wheelhouse, so I never really could find a spot to feature it… well, until today.  But genre aside, it’s a beautiful album, and also an interesting departure from his 2016 release, Here Comes a Riot.

You can check the album out on Bandcamp.  It’s also available at Amazon.

But just as we have things to be grateful for in our rear view mirror, the view ahead is no less sunny.  Kit Downes has a new album coming out, and ECM Records wisely kept the pianist in the fold after his contribution to Thomas Strønen’s Time Is a Blind Guide (who, coincidentally, is getting a new release in January, too).  Obsidian comes out later this month, and it features the ongoing collaboration between Downes and Tom Challenger.  Their organ-saxophone duo project already has roots running deep into the landscape.  It’ll be interesting to see how things get presented with the ECM touch.  Here’s a promo video…

Downes has an Obsidian EPK on his YouTube page.  You can pre-order it on Amazon.

And there’s no way that starting out a new year with Bill Frisell can ever be a bad thing.  Might be the best thing ever, as far as I’m concerned.  For a year in which I’m having to summon up every reserve of hope, it’s appropriate that we go with Frisell’s gorgeous composition “Throughout” to guide us into 2018.

You can find this song on Frisell’s 1983 release In Line.  Go buy it at Amazon.  It’s gorgeous.

Alright.  That should get us in good shape to start 2018.  Just as soon as your head stops hurting or you feel safe to step outside and see if 2017 is truly gone.  Good luck and be well.  Cheers.