What started as a casual conversation between two old musical friends, grew into the rekindling of their passion for playing music together. Then after a steady diet of once a week one on one meetings for musical experimentation and tea, it morphed into a four piece, cross generational combo of veteran musicians, with countless years of bands, gigs, touring and recording between them. With each member contributing his own style and experience to the project, the result is this self-produced debut CD of original compositions, Cheyney Sessions.
These instrumentals are essentially ensemble pieces, with finely crafted interplay between the elements, the sum of which is compelling, upbeat, fresh and unique, yet somewhat difficult to classify. The instrumentation, acoustic guitar, mandolin, bass and drums, might lead one to expect a certain type of music, perhaps country or even bluegrass. But while elements of those genres are evident, there are also liberal doses of jazz, funk, blues and Latin, all of which fuse into a style and sound that is uniquely Fontaine Cooley.
Each song is a small journey, and just when it seems the route is identified, an unexpected turn, a surprising detour occurs. From the country tinged “Bus Stories” with its’ salute to the Big Band era at the end, to the funky “It Is What It Isn’t If It Isn’t What It Is” with a Latin mid section, the trip is worth taking repeatedly.
Peter Hayes, guitar, Randy Patterson, mandolin, Terry Bortman, bass and Wyatt Patterson, drums are Fontaine Cooley.