Jazz Stories
1:19 pm
Wed May 23, 2007

Frederic Yonnet. (harmonica) and David Joel (guitarist)

J. Michael Harrison will have a conversation with Frederic Yonnet. They will discuss his latest recording Front and Center. Guitarist David Joel will be joining J. Michael around 11:00PM to talk about his new recording.

When it comes to the harmonica, French-born harmonicist Frederic Yonnet knows how to turn skeptics into believers. Most people perceive the harmonica as a "side" instrument used in country and blues. However, Yonnet is one of a handful of musicians to successfully demonstrate the harmonica's versatility as a lead instrument in contemporary jazz, as well as other genres of music.

Yonnet's latest CD project positions the artist where he and his music deservingly need to be--Front and Center. The harmonica takes the lead when Yonnet brings it out front and demonstrates its versatility and range. In Front and Center, Yonnet and his band covers songs like Boogie On Reggae Woman, Days of Wine and Roses, For the Love of You and God Bless the Child. With Front and Center, Yonnet orients listeners to the musical capabilities of the harmonica by keeping much of the music familiar. He pays homage to one of his musical inspirations, Stevie Wonder, with a fast-paced version of Boogie On Reggae Woman. In Days of Wine and Roses, Yonnet shuffles up-tempo workouts with African, Latin and European rhythms to add some "Afropean spice" to the jazz standard. Yonnet goes all out with his bluesy, high-energy interpretation of God Bless the Child.

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ARTIST'S STATEMENT (excerpt):

Since graduating from the New England Conservatory of Music (NEC) with my Masters in 1989, I played with a very wide variety of musicians, ensembles and shows in the U.S. and abroad, including the Fantasia Musical Circus in Japan (similar to Cirque du Soliel), a production of Jesus Christ Superstar in Germany, a stint as Musical Director for Living Stage (a division of the prestigious Arena Stage of Washington, D.C.), and numerous other teaching engagements, including a three year stint at Berklee, teaching arranging for rhythm section and horns.

In 1996, I returned home to Philadelphia, and devoted my efforts to teaching, composing and playing with the many fine musicians in the Philadelphia metro area, as well as performing solo engagements. Here I founded the David Joel Quartet and the Guitar Studio.

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THE BRIDGE with J. Michael Harrison

Friday, 10:00PM - 2:00AM

J. Michael Harrison presents his award-winning blend of jazz that takes you from the mainstream to the edge of the art. Rarely heard artists are played with regularity, as is a dash of jazz poetry.