Low Down Movie Soundtrack by Various Artists (Lights in the Attic/Cinewax)
Jazz to me has always been about celebrating life, documenting the hard times and the good. It’s an expression of emotions. The Low Down Soundtrack features many compositions from bebop pianist Joe Albany who performed with Miles Davis and Charlie Parker and others and on the soundtrack is surrounded by tracks from his peers Max Roach, Thelonious Monk and Coleman Hawkins. Scattered throughout are compositions from Ohad Talmor, who scored the movie and is an arranger, composer, conductor and multi-instrumentalist. His contributions will bring you back to a time when jazz was popular with his arsenal of styles, from intimate and melancholy to joyous big band sounds.
The movie Low Down is based on the memoirs of Joe Albany’s daughter A.J. titled Low Down: Junk, Jazz, and Other Fairy Tales from Childhood. In 2014 a movie was made, directed by Jeff Preiss with Elle Fanning, John Hawkes as Joe, Lena Headey and Glenn Close as Joe’s mother, as well as starring Flea and Peter Dinklage. The movie won the Cinematography Award: U.S. Dramatic at Sundance.
While Albany may not have been that great of a father, he expressed himself quite well in his music. Through failed relationships, poor decision making and drug addiction, Albany poured it all out on stage. Barbados is rollicking and playful, Lotus Blossom is a live piano piece and proves that Albany didn’t need fellow players to enrapt an audience. The Nearness of You is a standard jazz trio piece with stand-up bass and light drum brushes, the focus on Albany’s piano, making you realize what inventiveness and passion went into making music this unadorned: no amplifiers, no pedals, filters, effects or studio trickery, just raw emotion and love for the music. That’s Jazz.
(by Bret Miller)