Catherine and Wind

Catherine & Wind
New Folks
ACT ****
Making his debut for ACT Records guitarist Philip Catherine, 71, has been performing jazz at the highest level since he was a teenager, a playing partner of such luminaries as Dexter Gordon, Jean-Luc Ponty, and Chet Baker and his gypsy-jazz stylings and fluent modern mainstream technique have made him a connoisseurs’ choice, well, for ever.
The link between the Belgian and German bassist Martin Wind, who has made a developing reputation in the States and who has featured on such different albums there as Bella Napoli and Sweet Shadow just recently, goes back to Wind having heard an album of Catherine’s from the 1980s, and Wind even dedicates New Folks to an old bass teacher who gave him his first Catherine album. After getting-to-know-you gigs on the bandstand in German jazz clubs last year the pair made New Folks over a few days in April 2013 and it’s now the latest in ACT’s excellent Duo Art series stocked here with tunes that with the odd exception you won’t hear too often as somehow they’re deemed old fashioned. However, for anyone with sensible ears, and a grown-up attitude to life and music, that shouldn’t pose too much of an obstacle. And on ‘Old Folks’ and Oscar Pettiford’s ‘Blues in the Closet’, just to pick a few spots, the pair shine. Catherine is at his most heartfelt on his own gorgeous Lars Danielsson-esque tune ‘L’Eternel Désir’ and overall New Folks is a swinging attractive sound that carries like far-off footfalls whose ever decreasing echoes you’ll want to linger.
Philip Catherine, above left, and Martin Wind
photo: Dean Bennici/ACT
Released on 10 February