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iTunes Review

Les McCann used his second post-stroke album to revisit some old favorites, perhaps not only for the comfort they bring, but to prove that he could still hold his old ground. In the end, he does more than hold it — he discovers new dimensions in old songs. Take, for example, “What’s Goin’ On,” for which McCann recorded a definitive rendition in 1972. The version here is less social commentary than introspection. McCann uses his most intimate, gentle voice to intone the verses, and the song becomes the singer’s means of accepting the obstacles of his own life. Pianist Joja Wendt lays a piano foundation where McCann is no longer able, with McCann adding flourishes from his Fender Rhodes. Since space and consideration have long been part of McCann’s approach, the slow articulations of his electric keyboard don’t feel like diminished statements, but rather carefully articulated secrets from a gentle giant. The poignancy of this recording is made explicit in a soulful reading of “What a Wonderful World,” but it is felt equally in the funky workout of “Cold Duck Time,” an implicit tribute to McCann’s recently deceased partner, Eddie Harris.

Customer Reviews


Saw Les McCann today (4/30/2013). Asked him about "Pacifique" a couple of days ago. His memories of recording with Joja Wendt are beyond fond to one of total respect and special connection. Truly one Piano Great recognizing another. Joja's keyboard mastery is only enhanced by Les' seasoned voice. I am amazed the ammount of Les' true fans who DON'T know about this recording. His scatting on "Cold Duck Time" and grooving with Joja on "Little Blue Volkswagon are among my favorites. The rest of this heartfelt album is just treats upon special renditions of Les McCann favorites... I wish I could see these two Masters, together in person, for Les is as lively and sharp as ever... We need to appreciate this National Treasure before he is gone.....

Pacifique, Joja Wendt
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  • $9.90
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, Hard Bop
  • Released: Apr 12, 1997
  • Parental Advisory

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