Blackstick. Lloyd and Evan Arntzen, Grandfather and Grandson. Two talented voices, bonded together by more than blood, performing the music they've lived and breathed since Lloyd started teaching Evan the clarinet when he was seven years old.
Taken literally, Blackstick refers to the layman's impression of the Clarinet, and is a classic song, written and recorded by their hero, the masterful New Orleans clarinet and soprano saxophonist, Sidney Bechet.
Their brand of Jazz has given a new meaning to the beauty and harmony of this time-honoured musical tradition. It can swing with the full force of a freight train, and have the grace and coolness of a summer rain. It is a joyful noise, dedicated to the proposition that all clarinet players are created equal.
Our esteemed colleagues, Jennifer Hodge (bass), Don Ogilvie (guitar), Evan's brother Arnt Arntzen (guitar), and our long-lost brother up from New Orleans, Benji Bohannon (drums) made the trip to Grandpa Lloyd's place on Gabriola Island to make the recording. In that relaxed atmosphere, with adept recording engineer Dave Henderson on hand, the musicians allowed the music to flow forth. Channelling the force of the great New Orleans jazz clarinettists, Johnny Dodds, Jimmie Noone, and the grand-daddy of them all, Sidney Bechet, a Blackstick Album was born!