“Son, please refrain from acting like a complete fool.”
This is a statement I heard more than once as a youth.
Reaching the age of 71 is a milestone that prompts a fair bit of contemplation ... and a few realizations.
For me, the first realization was, “Wow, so far, so good.”
The second: “I am so lucky to still be able to express myself musically.”
And the third: “I have been blessed to have had so many musical experiences with so many incredible artists.“
My 2007 release, “Vignettes,” was a series of musical sketches, portraits and landscapes. I originally had planned to do another project along those lines.
But as it turns out, the “Incomplete Fool” project evolved into a series of musical novellas and short stories. The selections -- all inspired by experiences, musical and otherwise -- took me a bit by surprise.
The Muse was managing my memories. With these past adventures front of mind, the music began to take shape. The result is a collection of fondly remembered moments, such as a chance first meeting among three lifelong friends, early musical stylistic impressions, or a conversation with another species.
These brief musical tales also tell of inner personal struggles, traditional folk song settings, loving companionship, science fiction involving multidimensional realities, nightmare rehearsal scenarios, and, finally, the gift of aging.
As on earlier solo projects, I generated sounds via manipulated loops, nature sounds, filters, varied audio units, different keyboard sounds, different muted trumpet sounds, and my own voice. Different forms and styles of improvised music are featured throughout, and even the recording process was one of experimentation.
I hope each "story" offers an opportunity for reflection.
One big shout out to my brother, Jack, for sharing his many, many talents. Thanks, Bub!
Thanks in advance for listening.
Oh..., and Pops, I am still working on it.
E.E. Pointer(BMI)®®️, 2023
The Mythos of Whales
Shenandoah (for Murphy)
The Curse of Mulgrew
E.E. Pointer: Incomplete Fool
Kansas City area trumpeter and composer E.E. Pointer has done it again, offered up a very personal, meditative album, quiet but present, and thoughtful in every way.
INCOMPLETE FOOL opens with strong, long, full, trumpet notes. It is spacious, trumpet
and nothing else. “Hermanos”, a tune reminiscent of late decade Miles, opens the
album. It is a tune that then gets busy with something like electronic log drum, then full
drum set: the stick-hit closed hi-hat tick-tick-ticking two against three. It grooves--and in
a very contemporary way. And Pointer takes his time, stretches. Here is a musician who
Unlike with River Cow Orchestra, which Pointer steers, none of these tunes are quite as
frenetic and busy. This is not aleatoric music of the moment, but something else: more
Overall, much o f the album is reflective, inward, and trance-like. Although it grooves, the
album also serves as a thought vehicle. You can spin the album disc, turn out the lights,
and think. Subdued, like whale song, the album is otherworldly, subterranean--cool and
smooth, but not drowsy. It is carefully provocative. One song is aptly titled “The Mythos
Folksy and intimately personal, quiet, one of the known tunes on the album is a solo
piano version of “Shenandoah” and reminds of the Keith Jarrett version--so full of heart, so slow and mindful. Likely, this is the album’s only tune that is not an original, not on of E.E.’s new tunes.
These seem to be songs from a man who does not fear being alone. He embraces
silences. He’s ok being quiet. There is never that rush-hour push racing these notes, but
instead, the pace of a long, long walk.
“Portals” begins with glimmers and electronic splashes, like in a Star Trek song and then goes spoken word, E.E. reflecting on a spacey, Beat Kansas City-city night in an Uber. A little like the movie LULU ON THE BRIDGE or Sun Ra’s SPACE IS THE PLACE, jazz and space travel converge in the music and lyrics.
Zappa-like, Pointer merges music and cleverly ribald lyrics, but whereas Zappa seems overly pleased with his clever conceits, Pointer seems to wander into late-night Beat revelation: a diner, city lights, pie.
Everything has magic.
This is an album of a KC jazz musician who has fully come into his own. He does not
rush, not a note, not a phrase, not a song. A prolific composer, I find we are better for
his tunes. Diary-like experiments, they land like musical kaons. Dream; think; enjoy.
CD Reviews. June/July, 2023, JAM