Tag Archives: Piano

Champian Fulton & Cory Weeds: Dream A Little…


Pianist and vocalist Champian Fulton is back with a new album called “Dream a Little…”. The album is a duet with alto sax player Cory Weeds from Vancouver, BC, Canada. It was recorded live at Norah’s, which is a house in North Vancouver where Norah hosts intimate music events with an audience of about 40 people.

Champian has more details about Cory: “Cory and I made a record together in 2014, and we have wanted to make another one because we really enjoy playing together. Usually when we do a Canadian tour, we play one or two duo shows and it’s always one of our favorite gigs, because the duo setting is so loose and freeing”. Cory Weeds may be best known as the founder and owner of Cory Weeds’ Cellar Jazz Club in Vancouver, which he successfully ran for more than 14 years. Weeds built the Cellar to become one of North America’s best Jazz clubs. He is also an excellent saxophonist with an endless number of great musicians he was able to play with.

Champian is very proud of this album, because it highlights her piano playing and singing more than any other album she has made.

The selection of tunes comes from fan requests and features some of the most popular tunes from the Great American Songbook.

The album starts with the title song “Dream A Little Dream Of Me” which sets the stage for the whole album, easy and relaxed playing, perfectly swinging with a well-adjusted balance between saxophone voice and piano.

“Fly Me To The Moon” comes next and even if this song is played and heard so many times the open interpretation of Champian and the excellent sax solo by Cory gave me great pleasure.

“Lullaby Of Art” from Champian’s “Speechless” album is the next song. This instrumental song gives Cory and Champian the opportunity for a longer and more expressive solo and both musicians make use of it. One of my highlights on the album.

The beautiful ballad “Darn That Dream” comes next. An open beginning with Champian singing and playing the piano , the second verse with saxophone fillings and then a very expressive sax solo  followed by an inventive piano solo which results in more than seven minutes of multi-colored entertainment.

“Pennies From Heaven” is then more steady with a walking piano bass line setting the foundation for Cory’s and Champian’s honky-tonk piano solo.

“Once I Had A Secret Love” increases the pace one more time and Cory Weeds gets another great moment to show his versatility and mastery with an excellent solo. Champian Fulton also plays a nice solo but she stays much cooler then Cory does.

The next song is “I Thought About You” and this is somehow the most important song on the album. More than nine minutes of rolling and growling of Champian on the piano and Cory Weeds in a bluesy mood give this song it’s character.

The album continues with a swinging “Tangerine” in nice contrast after the earthy and heavy song before.

“I’d Give A Dollar For A Dime” comes next and the duo returns to their open and soft ballad music with Cory using the space this setup gives him.

The album closes with “Save Your Love For Me” and this song shows one more time the fun both musicians have and how much they enjoy the freedom in a duo.

This is just a nice album, recorded in an intimate live session with no extra effects, so it is music pure where two great artists show how much fun musicians and audience can have playing and listening to these popular songs. If you want to bring this spirit in your living or dining room then order this album and you have Champian Fulton and Cory Weeds playing exclusively for you. Enjoy, you will not regret it.

Champian Fulton is permanently on tour, she will be in Germany and Scandinavia in November and she is quite often performing in New York City.  I saw here some years ago in Estavayer in Switzerland which was great fun and she promised to be back in Bern hopefully next year.

More details and tour dates of Champian Fulton are found on her website:

And finally a playlist of this album on Spotify:

Søren Bebe Trio: Echoes


Danish jazz pianist and composer Søren Bebe and his trio have released their excellent sixth studio album ‘Echoes’ in May 2019.

Søren is a busy member of the Danish jazz scene but also his fellow musicians – Kasper Tagel on double bass and Anders Mogensen on drums – are well known and very active musicians.

The trio exists in this form since 2007 and has been able to play concerts around the world, which means, we have some experienced musicians that have been able to develop their own sound over the years. A sound that has been continuously checked and refined through live performances. The result of this process is an excellent album, perfectly balanced and pleasantly soft and melodic. The inspiration of this album comes obviously from jazz music but also  from classical and folk music.

Søren explains: “I’ve always been interested in classical music and fascinated by the classical players and also had my 3-4 years of intense classical training in my 20’s to the point where I almost decided to go all in and l leave the jazz playing behind. That stopped when I heard my teacher’s 14 year old protege in concert and realized how far behind I was. But I still practice and play the masters on a daily basis and have been working on some pieces for the trio. Sospiri Op.70 by Edward Elgar made it to the album and ‘Pavane for a Dead Princess’ by Ravel is just out as a single but from the same session. I also love folk music and I made a whole album with Danish folksong together with singer Ditte Rønn some years ago. We did an arrangement of a fairly unknown Danish folksong ‘Kærlighedstræet’ (the ‘tree of love’) and it has stuck with me ever since so I wanted to do a trio version also”.

Another traditional song that made it onto the album is the well known Danish psalm ‘Jeg er træt og går til ro’ (which means ‘I’m tired and off to bed’). This song is used as a goodnight song for kids but also for funerals as it talks about having a rest while Jesus watches over you. A video of the recording is available and I have added it here for you:

The album starts with the title song ‘Echoes’ which is my favorite tune on the album, soft and slow with an incredible feeling of space and time.

‘Waltz for Steve’ is a homage to Steve Swallow. The first solo goes here to Kasper Tagel on double bass followed by a great piano solo. After the soft beginning we hear the jazzy side of this trio.

The next song ‘Winx’ returns to the melancholic mood from the beginning, a soft piano dominated ballad with an excellent bass solo.

‘Homeward’ is a composition from Kasper Tagel. There is also a nice video available for this song:

The album continues with the two traditional songs ‘Kærlighedstræet’ and ‘Jeg er træt og går til ro’. Both songs are in the same mood as the initial song and contribute to the soft and melancholic vibe of this album.

‘Alba’ comes next. The song is dedicated to the city of Alba, Italy and its lovely people where Søren and his trio have been able to play a couple of times and where they have made good friends.

‘Alone’ is based on a bass riff played by the piano and even if it is a jazz tune it reminds me a little bit of J.S. Bach.

The next tune ‘New Beginning’ stands out. Søren has some more details: “Finally we did some free improvisation in the studio which resulted in two songs, one of them being on the album and entitled ‘New Beginning’. The title is a reference to a song from Charlie Haden’s album ‘The Montréal Tapes’ which is one of my personal top 10 albums”.

The album finishes with ‘Sospiri Op.70′ by Edward Elgar, a romantic composition that fits perfectly into the style of this trio.

This album comes in a very soft and melancholic mood. The music of this trio is extremely calm and melodic and it spans the bridge from the classical music of the 19th century into our era. The inspiration from classical and folk music gives the trio and this album it’s unique sound and atmosphere.

More information about Søren and his projects is available on his website: https://www.sorenbebe.dk/

And finally a playlist on Spotify to listen to the whole album: