Thursday, May 24, 2012

ALLAN HARRIS AND TAKANA MIYAMOTO LACKED CHEMISTRY ON NEW ALBUM CONVERGENCE

Jazz Singer Allan Harris and piano player Takana Miyamoto had the best intentions when they made the jazz duet album “Convergence”. They sincerely wanted it to resemble Tony Bennett’s and Bill Evans gem “Together Again”.  Harris and Miyamoto played some of the songs Bennett and Evans performed such as “My Foolish Heart,” “Some Other Time” and “We’ll be Together Again”.

Harris is a good jazz singer with an alpha male voice, and he’s most comfortable performing love songs. Most of the songs on “Convergence” fit his voice like a catcher’s mitt. Miyamoto is a strong jazz piano player. Clearly, she invested a chunk of her formative years studying Evans albums. In Atlanta, her hometown, she’s a bigwig. 

Harris and Miyamoto should be applauded for trying to emulate Bennett and Evans. But “Convergence" felt rushed. Midway through it, you realize they hadn’t played together long. Nor did they spend much time rehearsing. Harris was stuck in one groove unable to wiggle free, and Miyamoto didn’t know how to aid him.

Bennett and Evans had chemistry. That’s what Harris and Miyamoto lacked. “Convergence” would’ve been better had Harris and Miyamoto delayed making it for, say, a year, and spent more time performing together and learning each other’s inner workings. 

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