Here’s another gem — the rueful Thirties novella of love, that although ended, is undying — THAT OLD FEELING. This performance, which I find so moving, comes from the appearance of the James Dapogny Quartet at the Kerrytown Concert House in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on January 10, 2015 — captured for us by Laura Beth Wyman.
The Quartet is, for this occasion, Professor Dapogny on piano, arrangements, and moral guidance; Mike Karoub, cello; Rod McDonald, guitar; Kurt Krahnke, string bass.
I love this performance for many reasons — not the least of which is the opportunity to hear Mister Karoub, unequalled in swing lyricism, play at length. There’s also the sweet but practical exchange of whispered instructions and commentary at the beginning, as the Professor kindly shows the way. But what pleases me most is the emotional complexity of the performance. In other hands, THAT OLD FEELING might be merely sad or wistful.
That emotion isn’t neglected in this rendition, but the Quartet beautifully evokes the Thirties tradition of playing ballads just a bit faster — perhaps to distinguish them from sweetly gelatinous readings by more staid orchestras, or perhaps to give the players an extra chorus for improvising. I think of Billie’s TRAV’LIN’ ALL ALONE and Mildred’s WHEN DAY IS DONE as two vocal exemplars — but even though no words are uttered, listeners of a certain age will hear the story of the lyrics unfold as the band plays.
Old feelings made new:
Two other delights from this session can be found here. And there is the promise of more from this concert.
May your happiness increase!