This is a fantastic album that reminded me conceptually of another great one, Beyond the Missouri Sky by the great late Charlie Haden with Pat Metheny. Full of intricate melodies, rhythms and open spaces that evoke a multitude of emotions, a musical journey that must be revisited again and again as there are new things to be discovered with each hearing. The trio shines throughout.
Jacob Duncan’s The Busker is a treasure. The protagonists of Duncan’s autobiographical compositions are fellow companions, drifters, and triumphant nomads exclaiming their insignificance. The album balances acute sonic observations of a traveler’s microcosm with grand hints at the struggle to understand the macrocosm. The compositions are melodically-driven, sincere, musical conversations between storytellers. The improvisations are undisguised and earthy, exploring comings and goings, estrangements, and connections.
Duncan’s arrangements are sometimes sad, sometimes playful, and always original. They are well-served by his masterful companions, John Goldsby on double bass and Craig Wagner on acoustic guitar. It is paradoxical that The Busker, a musical memoir of an
erican music. Duncan’s compositions are constructed of the greatest melodic aspects of the American songbook and, the intimate, yet universal colloquialisms of the American folk traditions. Despite being instrumentals, each piece evokes the voice of a troubadour lulling the listener into a lucid dream, in which they become the teller of their own tall tales.
released November 18, 2016
Jacob Duncan - alto saxophone
John Goldsby - bass
Craig Wagner - acoustic guitar